It ain’t fair; you died too young, Like the story that had just begun, But death tore the pages all away. God knows how I miss you, All the hell that I’ve been through, Just knowin’ no-one could take your place. An’ sometimes I wonder, Who’d you be today? – Kenny Chesney
The image is fixed in my mind.
My parents would grow old. Crotchety and set in their ways, but always my pillars of strength.
My parents would grow old together.
They would retire and live off of their investments and savings.
They would take a cruise and travel to places they’d never been, like Australia and Hawaii. Maybe relax for a change.
They would love my son to pieces and relish being active and present grandparents.
I’d like to think they might have made a move from Arizona to Southern California to be closer to us. I can see them in a condo near the beach and my mother’s skin golden brown all year long.
There would be daily phone calls and frequent visits, long conversations about how I was as a child compared to Lucas’ latest phase. We’d talk about the far away places they’d lived, politics and books we were all reading and promise to share them when we were done.
My father might’ve bought that ship and mail business that he always talked about or maybe he would have invested in his favorite used bookstore in Tucson. Perhaps he’d consult school administrators working in small overseas schools around the world.
My mother might of continued substitute teaching never fully able to be away away from young children. Perhaps she would have volunteered at the local library or became a sales associate at a teaching store.
I wonder if she would made an effort to lose all the excess weight she carried. I’d like to think they both would have started a health kick; bought a juicer, purchased a treadmill, joined a gym and taken better care of themselves.
I’ll never know who they would’ve been or what they’d be doing now, but the image of them being here is fixed firmly in my mind.