Monday, October 01, 2012

The missing smile

My father died over the weekend. He had made it to 90 and had suffered from Alzheimer's. This past little while he hasn't recognized me as anyone other than someone who wandered into his field of vision. He was strong as a bull and had a great constitution, the reasons no doubt he lived as long as he did.

And he had a great smile.

While I didn't need anyone to tell me that, it was the one thing that struck the nursing staff. When he stopped smiling at them, they went on alert.

"I miss his smile."

"There wasn't a smile for me."

"No smile. He doesn't feel good."

I'll miss his smile, too. The way his eyes crinkled when he did it. The laugh that often followed.

But I have an advantage over the nursing staff. Through the ingenuity of genetics, that smile slid through me to a son. Then it hid in my other son and popped out in his son.

I still have that smile and I know someone who, while no longer with us, would be very happy about it.


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