A Comfort that Time Couldn’t Dampen

The title may be a little deep, but this blog is sort of somber. It would downright sad were it not for my cynical attitude and frequent use of profanity.

I’m feeling a mixed-bag of emotions lately…melancholy, grief, longing, a sense of homecoming and finally a comfort that settled in my middle and sorta keeps me warm. And all this swirling of feelings and thoughts and memories can all be traced back to the very desk I’m writing from.

I’ve finally reclaimed my dad’s old desk.

It’s not a huge or imposing desk and it doesn’t have elaborate or ornate moldings or scroll-work. It’s kind of simple; a little scratched and doesn’t exactly match my ‘décor’. My mother bought it for him when I was a little girl and I remember exactly where it sat in our house. When my dad used it, it was mainly for bill paying, research and correspondence. Now, we use it for bill paying, research and correspondence. The technology has definitely changed, but the desk never will. Where once sat a pen and pencil set and a desk blotter, my trusty desk top, printer and electric pencil sharper now rest. Files with pedigrees on dogs and horse and property deeds are now filled with death certificates, livings trusts and wine lists. We have one whole drawer committed to electronics. The desk has come into the 21st century. I wish like hell my dad had come along with it.

When you lose a parent at an early age, I was 14, you always harbor a fear that one day you’ll simply forget. Forget his laugh or how he walked. Forget what he taught you in the short amount of time he had and forget what kind of man he was. And as much as I didn’t want to forget I also didn’t want to begin to turn the man into myth. I didn’t want to forget his flaws any more than I did his features. I wanted to remember him for what he was and who he was and hope to hell it shaped who I became.

This desk was a long time in coming, and like all the other things I have of his, they shed a light on the man that I’ve lived more of my life without than I did with. And while I’m not the type to make a shrine, I can’t help thinking about him more when I sit here. It’s probably natural, but since I haven’t sat at this desk in probably 20 years, I find it comforting and slightly unnerving at the same time. It’s a part of me, as much as my personality and how I choose to live my life. It’s all that is good and bad in me embodied in a chunk of wood and hardware that ultimately links me to a man that was gone way too soon, yet molded me way too much.

I loved my dad. I love his desk. And for better or worse, I am my father’s daughter.

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