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Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Missing You

(My father has dementia.)

“Daddy,” I ask, “how are you today?”

          “They put glass in my food. I think I passed the test and didn’t eat any.”

          “I hope not, “I declare.

          “Did you fix that thing?”

          “That thing?” I respond. “Is it in here?”

          “What about my suitcase? Did you find it in Florida?”

          “How did your suitcase get in Florida?” I ask.

          “With the swim team.”

          “You were in Florida with the swim team?” I question carefully.

          “I threw up when I couldn’t swim. No one liked me.”

          “I’m sorry you threw up,” I sympathize.


          “Because it hurts to be sick,” I answer.

          “Who was sick? Did you get my suitcase?”

          “Yes,” I tell him. “I found it. Everything is fine.”   

          “Did those things match?”

          “Those things?” I ask. 

          No response. He stares at the wall.

          “They match perfectly,” I promise.

“They didn’t like me so they left me.”

“Where did they leave you?” I ask.

“I’m so glad there are no more woods,”

“Did they leave you in the woods, Daddy?”

“Why do they leave me every night to sleep alone?”

“I’m sorry you were left,” I try.

          “I got to sleep at Autumn Cove for three nights.”

          “I’m so glad to hear it,” I say.

          “I need to figure this out, but I can’t.”

          “I have trouble figuring it out, too, Daddy.”

          “You can’t figure it?”

          “No, I can’t,” I tell him. “Sometimes it’s really hard.”

          “I’m sorry it’s hard.”

          “Me, too,” I speak, trying not to cry.

          He pats my arm. “It’s OK.”

          “I know, Daddy. It’s OK.”

          “Did you pay for my airline ticket?”

          “Yes,” I tell him. “I always do.”

          “Well, that’s good. I missed you.”

          “You did?” I ask.

          “I always miss you when I am asleep.”

          “Me, too, Daddy. I always miss you, too."

Even when you are old, I will take care of you. Even when your hair has turned gray, I will take care of you. I made you and will take care of you. I will carry you, and I will save you.

—Isaiah 46:4 ICB

© 2017 Lynn Lacher


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