July 8, 2010

30 Day Letter Challenge - Dear Deceased person I wish I could talk to...(Day 11)

Felipe Ortiz
July 27, 1926 - June 2, 2006

Dear Welo,

This is actually my second letter to you. I left the first letter in your hands the day we said our final goodbye. Nothing has been the same since you passed that rainy Friday morning. Wela hasn't been the same. The family is still struggling to take care of her. She has Alzheimer's now (your suspicions were right), and she is battling breast cancer. This year has been a tough one for our family, but we are getting through it. Did you know it rained the whole week leading up to your burial? Just thought you should know. You are missed so much every day. Going to the house that you shared with Wela for over 40 years doesn't quite feel the same. Whenever I am there, I know in my heart something is missing. Your presence. Perhaps I got too accustomed to entering, walking over to your favorite chair and greeting you with a kiss and a "BendiciĆ³n". I wish I could hear you sing that little song you used to sing when I was around. You remember, the song with my name? It's funny and unfortunate how the little things seem to only matter when they are greatly missed. I think I just expected you to always be there. Did I truly believe you would always be there when I came through that door? I think part of me did. But the other part knew you wouldn't, especially when I realized your health was fading. I was in denial. It took me a while to acknowledge the fact that you were sick because I couldn't stand the reality of losing you. There was so much I wanted to say to you. There was so much I wanted to ask you. There was so much I wanted to know about you and Wela and your life together in Puerto Rico; your life before the seven children. I wanted to hear in your own words where you met and the exact song that was playing when you first saw her. I wanted you to tell me about your time in Korea and how it changed your view on the world. A young Puerto Rican man who had never left the island, I am sure the war rocked your entire world. I still want to know, and the pain of possibly never knowing is paralyzing. I regret that we never really talked about your amazing life and it hurts so much that I will never get to really know the man who is my grandfather.

You had a wonderful life. You had great children, a beautiful wife who loved you so much. You were always surrounded by family and friends. You ate good. Drank good. I am at peace because I know we made your life great and worthwhile, and at the end, that's all that matters. I love you. I hope that you are resting peacefully, Welo.

Love always,
your granddaughter Vanessa

Ps: I was told that this was your favorite song because it was the song that was playing when you first met Wela. I listen to it whenever I am missing you.

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