Monday, 3 February 2020
Finally, I got to see you again. It’s been far too long and I’ve missed you so much. I’m sorry about being away. I was excited, giddy for the imminent surprise reunion. For you didn’t know I was coming back to see you. As I came through the trees there you were, crazy fool, playing in a shallow pool of water. Wearing that turquoise and purple hooped shirt, one of my absolute favourites. Bent over at the waist, hands and top of your head submerged. The times I’ve seen that pose before! You lifted your head from the ground as if sensing a presence approaching, and turned towards me. And as realisation dawned, with arms outstretched and face beaming with that most beautiful smile, I heard your voice once more. “Dad!”, you exclaimed.
And you were gone again, and I was awake. A stream of steady tears running down my cheeks from where I’d been silently crying.
So totally unexpected. How long has it been? I can’t even remember. A gift from the mind to bring great joy and a stabbing blow to renew bitter sadness. That shirt in photos that sit on the mantlepiece. That pose from the photo on the bookcase, taken on the beach in Cornwall. A scene constructed from bits of what’s left, of something that never was, as a beautiful and painful reminder of who I am. A forever Dad of his forever much-loved little boy. Until I see you next time, Adam.