I don't know how to do that. I looked at my son who is now six feet tall and taking on the shape of his late father. He stood there holding one of his dad's ties he'd found in the closet and a new dress shirt I'd bought him. We made eye contact and I could see the uncertainty in his eyes. Sure, mom can ward off a horde of raccoons with a water gun but can she tie a Windsor Knot?
"I'll YouTube it," I said with a smile while inside I fought off the whirlwind of emotions that assaulted me at his simple request.
Damn you, Sean, for leaving your son without a father.
Damn, me, for not being enough.
Damn the world for being unfair and cruel.
Damn you, Sean, for being missed so greatly long after you've passed on, for the gaping hole you've left in our lives.
Damn me for never knowing how to tie a frick'n necktie!
Shaking off those thoughts, I grabbed the iPhone and went to YouTube. I fake confidence pretty well, but my son didn't look convinced.
"I'll just forget it," he said, looking at the tie in his hand.
"Nope. I got this. Look." Sure enough, there was a how to video on YouTube. (I love YouTube!)
"No, that's fine, it's okay." He turned to leave.
I grabbed his arm and made him sit on the edge of the bed. "We can do this. It's just a tie."
My hands trembled as I looped the necktie around my son's neck. I wanted to get it right.
You should be here, Sean. You should be the one teaching him all these manly things. He needs you. I shook off the thoughts and concentrated on the YouTube video.
We watched the video a couple of times. I screwed up several attempts, but then finally I got it right. Yay! I squealed in triumph, fighting back the urge to do a cartwheel followed by a cheerleader jump.
"You look so handsome," I said.
He rolled his eyes, stood and walked to the mirror. I watched him study his reflection as he adjusted the tie. With a shrug, he said "thanks." Our gaze met in the mirror, son to mother, and I knew he was thinking of his father, too.
Life isn't fair. Yes, we will always miss Sean. But maybe I am enough. Perhaps as the kids grow they will see that I tried my best. That's all any of can do at the end of the day...our best. Sometimes we'll fall and struggle, but then there will be moments when we're saved by YouTube and all feels right with the world.
Peace to you---
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