Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Happy Birthday...

Today you would've been 86.

Each year, as you know, I write some things down that remind me of what a special part of my life you here goes.

Apparently, the first time I laid eyes on you - at the brilliant age of 6 months old - I knew we would be close friends!

When I was in NY or when you came to visit me here, there was nothing else that mattered but getting one of your hugs...a hug that felt like it reached into the inner depths of my soul and had my heart smiling from the inside.

I remember your scent, a mixture of Ararmis and soap, and how your white undershirt and jeans seem to keep you young at heart, no matter how many years went by.

I remember your hair, that funny grey comb-over that never seemed to blow in the right direction when a wind gust blew and how you unconsciously fixed it by brushing your hand across your forehead.

I remember thinking that you kept that round figure, no matter what the doctor said about your heart, because you knew your belly was my favorite pillow and you knew it was impossible for me to sleep without resting my head on it.

There were long walks in the garden with you explaining every herb and bush.

There were ice cream parlor visit's where sharing a banana split was only so Nanny didn't yell at me for eating too much ice cream.

There was that phrase "!" that I looked forward to hearing from the other end of the phone, no matter how many birthday's passed.

There were always early mornings with onion bagels and fried eggs followed by long walks on the boardwalk with Uncle Leo.

And there was that laugh...that funny laugh, that was part cough - part giggle - that put all my worries at ease and reminded me I was in the room with MY Poppy and everything would be alright.



There are so many things I miss about you and being back in your house last week, I realized you may be gone in the flesh but my memories and your scent are still constantly with me.

Each year I choose to celebrate your birthday, rather than your death, and there is no better way to say Happy Birthday - at least from my perspective - than to share with you all you have left me to pass on to my son.

You were a kind man who did so much for his country, community and church and who is fondly remember by all who mention your name.

Just so you know:

Onion bagels don't taste the same (even in NY)!
Fried eggs don't come out right (even in your favorite pan)!
And no one, but Brady, has ever been loved the way I love you!

I miss you everyday and I hope you and Uncle Leo are walking the boardwalk in heaven as we speak!