My parents were divorced when I was five years old. It was tough seeing my dad move out of our home, and it was lonely having just my mom and I in the house. I would go see my dad occasionally, and I always cried when I had to leave him. It was a tough age to have divorce happen. I didn’t really understand why it was happening, and for a long time I thought it was something I did wrong.
I remember when I would stay with my dad, and he would have to take me to daycare in the morning. I would cry for hours in the childcare provider’s arms, because I missed my dad so much. I wanted so desperately to have my family back together again. I just wanted my dad in the house, and have it be the three of us again. Knowing what I know now, I realize that the divorce was a good decision for the whole family, but at the time it was devastating.
Over time, we all became acclimated to our new lives. I remember our house was being sold, and I was packing my stuff. My mom came in my room, and said that I had received something in the mail. How exciting! I looked at the envelope, and the return address just said “Dad.” My eyes filled with tears as I opened the envelope. I pulled out a card, and on the front was a cartoon picture of two guys. In the middle of the guys was the letter “o.” (Man – o – man). I laughed at how the phrase was depicted in pictures. On the inside, it said, “you’re a great friend.” And my dad wrote about how he misses me, but is thankful for the time we get together. He said we always had so much fun when we were together, and he can’t wait to see me again. I cried so hard, as I clenched the card in my hands.
I placed the card in a box, and made sure it was safe. We moved to our new house, just my mom and I, and shortly after, my dad had moved to a city three hours away for a new job. I kept that card in my dresser, and always took it out to look at it when I was sad, or missing my dad. Sometimes I’d cry after reading it, and sometimes I’d just smile. That card meant the world to me. As the years went on, I still held on to it. By the time I was 10, my mom had remarried, and so had my dad. My mom, step-dad, and I were getting set to move to a state two states away from my dad. It was emotional and hard.
As I packed my things for the move, I placed that card from my dad in a box of my things, and taped it up carefully. When we arrived in our new state, I placed that card in my dresser. I didn’t look at it as often as I used to, but was comforted knowing it was there. I would think of the front of the card, and chuckle. Man – o – Man, you’re a great friend. It was still so special to me. The day of my graduation from high school, I looked at the card. I teared up as I read it. So many good memories had been made since I received that card. And I could still think back to the day I received it in the mail. I remembered how important that card became in my life. A constant reminder of the bond my dad and I had….still do.
I’m 36 years old now, and have moved a few times. Somewhere along the way, I lost that card. However, I still can picture it, I still remember it. From time to time, I catch myself even thinking of its words…..Man – o – Man, you’re a great friend. My dad is one of my best friends to this day, and I am so thankful that he is still here to make memories with my children and I. Even though the card is gone, the power of the words still resonate within me. I will never forget it, but I do regret losing it along the way.