Monday, July 6, 2009

The House of Horrors Revisited

This is where I grew up from the summer before 7th grade until I fled to college.

On the trip to my sister's for the 4th we took a road trip. We drove down to see my step-brother. I will try to tell this coherently but it's still a whirling mess in my brain.

On the drive down, we drove by my old stomping grounds. I was appalled at the distances my mom had let me walk - alone - at night. This is the house where most of the evil took place.

It has changed. The cedar wood siding was replaced with vinyl. The windows have been updated. The door was replaced. The window by my bedroom is the same. You can see where the station wagon used to park - oil stains still.

I shivered as we drove by, but also realized it was just a house.

We drove on to my father's grave. My step-brother told us that there had been problems with the ground sinking in the rain. Until that was fixed, no gravestone could be erected. He told us it was the fresh grave in the back. Sister and I walked toward the back of the graveyard and saw a new gravesite with flowers and a heart-shaped, red, white & blue hanging basket. We talked about the fact that it meant Rita must have been there for the 4th of July already. We walked around to see pictures and the wasn't him. It was someone else. We looked further and there it was.

No flowers. No pictures. The marker is a cut-out from the funeral home webpage. It is on a funeral home marker. The funeral home must have put it there.

Father's Day was just a few weeks ago. Graves of other fathers are covered in flowers and momentos. His grave - nothing.

Sister and I felt a bit bad about not brining flowers. So we picked a few from the church gardens. My nephew and daughter stuck them in the grave dirt in rows. We met my step-brother and his wife there. Alex didn't even look at the grave much. One of the kids stepped in the dirt and Sister and I moved to grab them. Alex said, "ah don't worry about it." He didn't have much attachment to the site.

Sister and I thought about leaving a picture of us on the site as a message to Rita that we had been there. We decided not to though - because we didn't have one of the two of us with us.

Sister and I reminisced about what her husband had told Dad in their last phone conversation back in 2002. BIL told Dad, "you are going to die a cold, lonely man. When you are dead and in the grave, there will be no one to mourn you. You will die alone." And he did.


Anonymous said...

How tragically sad for everyone.

lawyerchik said...

Isn't it weird how the outside doesn't look that threatening.....

It sounds like you are still grieving, Enola. Maybe not the loss of the actual person of your father but of something. [[[HUG]]] Hang in there.

Paul from Mind Parts said...

This is very sad. And I must say the pictures were chilling to me. I don't know why I responded so strongly to them, but I did. I did something similar with pictures like this brought to my therapist's office and she wasn't too happy with me. Thought I was pushing things too much or trying to intentionally torture myself.

Casey said...

I will be making the same pilgrimage in a few weeks Enola. Now I am dreading it even more. I will take flowers...because I sense that perhaps you wish you had.

I agree with are grieving. To me...that is a good thing...for you. Its necessary to your healing for a whole host of wrongs done to you.

Much love and many blessings.


Anonymous said...

nothing profound to say...sending you a big hug~! DM

VICKI IN AZ said...

Proud of you for even going.

austin said...

The other day a friend and I went out to eat. We got a tad bit lost and ended up by the house from the 6th grade. My goodness it seemed so much smaller than before. It was sad yet intriguing. I was drawn in yet ready to get the heck out of that area.

I think sometimes I look at photos just to validate my experiences. This happened here, this happened here. I was this old when this happened. I think the main point is "I was" "I existed".



Enola said...

Exactly Austin.

And for those that have emailed, yes that is my father's grave. I blocked out his name but the rest of the info is correct, including the picture.

Kahless said...

I am thinking of you.