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Sometimes I write stuff in my journal and then I post it here after I’ve edited it a kazillion times. This is one of those posts that I won’t publish if I think about it too much – so I’m just writing it here and letting it go.

I’ve been talking to people online and talking to friends in my “real” life  and reading other people’s words and I am realizing that something I always heard (but thought was hyperbole) is absolutely true:  20 years is like 5 minutes. You blink and you miss it – and you can’t get it back and when you try to reconnect and start over, sometimes you find out that you can’t. Boats sail without you and planes take off and distance … well, distance is more than an arbitrary number.

My brother called me the other day. He told me that he had something for me. I had homework, I wanted to send an email to someone I want to know better, there was something on television I wanted to watch and I didn’t want to put on a bra and change my shirt and look presentable and talk to my brother. He told me he had been out at my grandfather’s house – and he had a painting that my father had done and he wanted to give it to me.

I don’t think he noticed that I didn’t know how to answer.

My father was an artist and I think he had some talent. Who knows what he could have done with it? He chose not to pursue it – and I’ll never know why, exactly, although I can make some guesses.  Soon after his death the artwork got divided up and this is the painting I got.

boat painting

My mother told me that I could also have the painting at my grandfather’s house – eventually. I forgot about it, actually, but 21 years later, my mother remembered her promise. It doesn’t matter that I don’t have a lot of his “things.”  I have two very small pieces of his heart and soul.

I don’t remember my dad ever telling me he was proud of me. He probably said it at some point, but i don’t remember it. We didn’t have conversations like that. I think we don’t always say things we should – things that people should hear. And by “we” I mean me.

So here goes. If your name isn’t on this list, it’s probably because I already told you what I want you to hear. Or I don’t like you. One or the other.

Archie – Believe. Don’t listen to your doubts.

Leslie – I love you. I’m sorry I’m such a jackass, but we’ve been friends for almost 40 years. You’re stuck with me.

Griggs – For God’s sake, shut the fuck up.

“Bridget”  – You were wrong.

Shreck – I’m so happy we found each other again.

David – Thank you. You’re kinder than I deserve.

Lass – As long as you’re around, I know I’m not as fucked up as I feel  😀

Wende – Thanks for never making me feel as fucked up as I actually am 😆

Mickey B –  You have such a generous soul and you brighten everything around you.  I missed you.

Delmer – You’re funnier than I am. I resent that sometimes, but mostly I love it.

RW – I don’t understand half of what you’re saying. But I want to get it.

JR – Fuck off.

Len – You can have it all. And you deserve it.

Bryan – I rarely agree with you anymore – but I still love you.

Ralph –  You really knew me – knew my heart –  and you loved me anyway. I’ll never forget that.

MMB – I really admire you. I don’t think you ever knew that.

Marcia – You’re the bravest person I know. And I wish I knew you better.

“Michael” – You’re cool.

Jo AnnE –  You deserve someone like “Michael”   🙂

Tug – You always make me smile. That’s a gift.

Erin – You inspire me and I wish I could see the wonder in the world that you see.

MoC – yeah, yeah, yeah.

What do you need to say today?

Edit: The problem with using initials is that it gets confusing. I didn’t want to use the first name of the person I told to fuck off (because I was venting and didn’t want a confrontation) so I used initials. Which just happen to be the same initials as a family member, who should have been on the list (and if she had been on the list, it would have said, “I think you have a lot of courage. Even though I’m not there, I always have your back.”).  I should have used a different name but I just didn’t think it through. Sorry for the confusion.