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my dad's jacket

sometimes i wear my dad's old jacket. the one he used to wear all the time.

like ALMOST EVERYDAY all the time.

it's one of those jackets that long ago went out of style but seems to make a little comeback every now and then. but despite it being old-fashioned and slightly out of date, i still wear it. i admit it's  mostly just around the house, but i wear it.

because it reminds me of him.

 it was one of the only pieces of clothing i kept when he died.

that and an old pair of his socks.

everything else went to the nursing home. my dad would have wanted it that way. somehow the most giving man i ever knew was able to continue giving even after he died. 

but i had to keep something. i don't know why.

i guess i thought if i didn't give everything away that i'd still have a piece of him. i guess i thought if i kept his favorite jacket then he wouldn't really be gone.

crazy, i know. but somehow it's true.

on days when i feel alone, or tired, or overwhelmed...i put on his jacket.

on days when i miss him, or i need his advice, or i can't believe he's gone...i put it on and wrap it even tighter.

somehow this jacket puts my dad in the room. somehow this jacket puts my dad in the world.

same with the socks. they're threadbare now but it doesn't matter. just the sight of them brings back a million memories.

and just wearing them brings peace.

and that's what my dad meant to me in this world.


and love.

and peace.

it may be old. it may be out of date. it may even be out of style. but it was my dad's jacket.

so if you see me wearing it, tread softly.

because i'm not ready to let go of either of them just yet.

and i'm not sure that i ever will be.


  1. If eternity is a continuum, and I believe that it is, than your Dad really isn't gone. He's separated from you in a physical sense, but not in a spiritual sense. I think it is those tangible things that help us to connect with God and each other. I think that when my Dad is gone, I would do the same thing. I'd probably walk around in his golf shoes or listen to his old Burt Bacharach records. To me, it is like praying with the Rosary. The beads remind me that Jesus is still here, even though I can't touch, smell, see, or hear him. He's more alive than anything. Love you, Susan

  2. i prayed the Rosary twice yesterday and each time it brought such a sense of peace. i'm doing a Novena right now...The Unfailing Novena of Mary Undoer of Knots. for some reason i feel the call of the Rosary more right now than at any other time of my life. and of course, the person who taught me how to pray the Rosary? my dad.

    i love you too.

  3. I'm doing that Novena too! I'm on the 2nd day! Lots of knots to untangle...I guess that's what keeps life interesting.


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