We all met up in the parking lot of the furniture warehouse to watch fireworks each 4th of July. Often it’d been a whole year since our families had seen each other, and I always shrank back a bit, morphing into a more shy version of myself. I was the only girl among four or more boys and I was separate in my girlishness. The loud booms scared me and the colors thrilled me, and all of our faces were raptured as we stared up into the summer sky.
My mind turned to all of those Independence Days this morning, how my dad is gone now and how their dad is gone now – both having passed away in the past year, and how those days are done but how they still feel as real as the thick Texas humidity. I still struggle with wanting to find my dad somewhere and not knowing where to go, I found myself googling “how to contact the dead” before writing this. I am aware of my quiet desperation, it’s just that I want to sit next to him again and watch the fireworks and witness the colors shining in his dark eyes.