Wearing this dress always reminds me of my father. There was a summer afternoon when he approached me once and said that it “looked nice”. This is the kind of compliment that soars, coming from him. In fact, today, twirling around in it, I could imagine him smiling. It was the same look he gave me, right before I left Wisconsin for good, after visiting for Christmas. My grandfather was getting ready to drive me to the airport, and he stood there, a full-grown man, with red eyes that looked like tears might fall from them.
He gave me a kiss on the forehead then, and said simply: “Call your mom more. She misses you.” And you know, more than anything, I knew that he really missed me too. It was something said in body, and soul, and sorrow.