Reminiscing While Fighting Depression


Dearest Readers: It’s been a while since I’ve posted. I’ve been depressed. Extremely busy. Overwhelmed. Stressed. Too many things happening right now. Sometimes, my hands shake. I do my best to relax. To cope. Telling myself ‘this too shall pass.’ Then, I find myself thinking of my father, Walter W. Perkins. ‘If only I could talk to him. He’d cheer me up. He’d tell me to keep my chin up. He’d ask me to smile, my beautiful dimply smile. He’d remind me to hold my head high. The world is my pearl, and I should grab it in my hands and hold it tight. Yes. Dad would boost my spirits, and I would feel the burdens of life releasing from my chest. The tears falling on my cheeks would cease to exist. I would breathe a long deep breath. Inhale. Exhale. Breathe. You’re going to be all right. Sometimes I do not feel all right. It’s challenging to move forward when someone so significant to my life is suddenly gone. After I lost my dad on July 6, 1999, I had a vision – a visit from him – on September 9, 1999. It was early morning, barely dusk. I felt something touch my left foot. “Yes,” I whispered. My toe wiggled. I glanced at my toe, seeing a vision of a man – my father – dressed in white clothing. He said: “Barbara. You need to move forward. Stop grieving about me. I’m all right. I’m happy. You must move forward. Let me go. I’m all right. I’m. All. Right.” I rose from the bed. The vision was gone.

Initially, I planned to write about my father on July 6. Instead, I was busy. So. Busy. Can’t recall what I did, but the day passed away, just like my father did on that sad day. I remember the nurses telling me they could bring him back. Just say the words, Barbie. We can bring him back. I couldn’t. I remained in a chair. Tears rushing down my face. Yes. I wanted to say bring him back but, I knew better. His quality of life had disappeared. He was so weak he could hardly walk. He no longer escorted me to the exit of Sandpiper Convalescent Center, to kiss me on the cheek and tell me goodbye. His breathing was shallow, and daily, he would aspirate his food. He insisted on eating.

“It’s the only thing I can do, and I’m going to eat – even IF it kills me.” He said. And. That is what happened on Tuesday, July 6, 1999. As he was struggling to eat his dinner, he choked. Coughing profusely, he aspirated his food and was gone.

Bring him back? No. I could not allow that. I knew I would miss him. I knew I would feel like an orphan. I had lost a man who adored me from my childhood through my adult years. I saw the gleam in his eyes when he mentioned me. Funny. I just remembered that. My childhood was so painful; I locked all of those emotions away. Now, at times, some of them come rushing back – dancing into my brain, and I remember how much my father, Walter W. Perkins loved me.

It has been 20 years now. Still, I ache for my father. I hurt to hear his voice. I hunger to sing harmony with him, and I crave to hug him – just one more time.

People told me the grief would ease, but it hasn’t. Although I want to open some of his scrapbooks and diaries, I cannot. The pain of his loss is still much too fresh. I have learned to walk through the grief, and when I battle to get to the other side of grief, there appears to be a thick, dark cloud blocking me.

I keep telling myself One day I will open those scrapbooks and look at them, but not now. Not today. Maybe never. I miss him so much.

So, today, as I battle depression once again, I’m keeping myself busy. Earlier, I emptied the dining room hutch. Admiring the depression glass collection. Christmas china collections. Crystal and other items. Now, I must polish the furniture, clean the dishes and put them back. Or. Maybe. Not.

Not today. Today, I wish to reminisce about my father, Walter W. Perkins. I want to remember him and his identical twin brother. I never met him. He died much too young, shattering my father’s life for a bit.

Today, I pray the Perkins Twins can harmonize in Heaven. Maybe one day, when I join them, I can sing in harmony too, but for now, I must get busy with life.

After all – tomorrow is another day, and I plan to walk the pier again. Something I haven’t done in weeks. I know. I need to get back to life, and I will. Tomorrow!

I must continue fighting this depression – before it gets the best of me. I must take one step tomorrow morning. Then, I’ll take another step and rush to the pier — just to feel the sea breeze kissing my face. Yes, to feel the humidity of the late summer kissing my face and body with glitter. After all – ladies, especially Steel Magnolias do not perspire. We GLITTER! Tomorrow will be a new day. I must approach tomorrow with my sassy, feisty attitude, and my wiggling swag as I dance around the pier while collecting my Glitter. Yes. Tomorrow!

How about you readers? What will you do – Tomorrow?

 

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