“There is an hour, a minute - you will remember it forever -
when you know instinctively on the basis of the
most inconsequential evidence, that something is wrong.
You don't know - can't know - that it is the first of a series
of "wrongful" events that will culminate in the utter devastation
of your life as you have known it.”
― Joyce Carol Oates, A Widow's Story
INNER CITY STORIES
Who do I miss? I’m asked this question a lot. Well, I miss a lot of people, from family to friends. But there is one person I miss dearly; I miss my step-father David. Now some people might ask, why would you miss someone who’s your mom’s boyfriend? David wasn’t just my mom’s boyfriend, I saw David as a father figure. I didn’t call him Dad but I still saw him as a father figure. He died on November 14th, 2010. I remember when my aunt broke the news to my sister and me like it was yesterday. It was November 15th, a school night around 6 pm. My aunt, sister, and I had just finished getting out of parent conferences and were in the school parking lot seated in the car. My aunt hadn’t started the car yet, so we just sat in silence until she spoke up and said, “You guys know David, right?” Immediately my sister and I were happy just hearing his name, and we replied, “Yes, what happened?” Suddenly she started to tear up and said, “He got shot yesterday.” My heart shattered. My sister asked if he survived, my aunt replied no. As soon as that word left her mouth, my sister and I burst out in tears. I was ten years-old and so hurt.
David’s mom knew how much he meant to us, so she let us create and place posters around his casket. I remember mine clearly. I had drawn flowers and glued a picture of him and me when I was six, and I wrote the words “I love you” beneath it. My mom didn’t allow us to go to his funeral because she thought it would be too much for us. I was devastated and I still am. David meant the world to me; I still cry when I think about him or even see a picture of him. My mom was in love with David, she was one of the first to know he died; I think that’s why she couldn’t come to parent conferences with my sister and me that evening. Till this day my mom still has every picture they took together, every letter he wrote to her, and even the article in the newspaper when he died. I’ve never gone to see his grave, but this year I will. Ever since I first started thinking about having a sweet fifteen, I’ve wanted him and me to do the father-daughter dance. Now it’s impossible to do so. I just wish he was here right now; I need to give him a hug one last time, to speak to him, to hear his voice. That guy is my real father and always will be. It’s sad to say but I don’t think I would be this emotional if my blood father had died because he was never there for me like David was. So now everyone knows that I miss a lot of people, but no one can top the fact that the one person I truly miss is David.