i am surrounded by my childhood furniture. the painted white wood with brass and flower pulls. i am exhausted. i have been here for 12 hours and my almost 82 year old father is running literal fucking circles around me.

our first and always stop was a visit to the mausoleum where my mother has been for almost 2 years. i actually don’t mind it. my father and i look up at her photo attached to a bronze vase. fake flowers fill the vase from my mother’s arrangements over the years. beautiful deep red roses. her favorite. we do the sign of the cross. first when we get there. then when we leave her. we give our dollar donation and light the fake candle by pressing a button on the red plastic. then we leave. it takes a second for my dad and i not to feel like this whole fucking experience is fake. that my mother is really alive and making us a frittata for lunch.

next step always involves a shopping trip to Wegman’s near his house. it is ridiculously crowded. my father is basically running around the store picking out a fresh melon, prosciutto, and a tiramisu. this is all for father’s day. his holiday. he still plans to cook the meal himself.

“dad, why are we rushing?”

“huh?” he always pretends he cannot hear me.

i remember how i spent an hour at whole foods near my Washington, DC condo the morning before. i fell in love with an orchid that i placed in my small cart. it was beautifully expressive with white and purple and darker purple and lighter purple. i could not stop smiling at her. i moved so slowly. i took every turn with caution so she wouldn’t get jostled around. i picked out $200 in fresh fruit, cheese, nuts, and wine for my father. i felt so at ease. i was off work. it was early in the morning. it was just me, whole foods, and my beautiful new addition to our home.

then i was jolted back to wegman’s as my dad was yelling at me

“adriana, ask the guy how much the beefsteak tomatoes are. i don’t see a price.”

i asked my father if i could stop at the coffee bar in Wegman’s and he told me there was no time.

“why no time? what else are we doing?”

“huh?” he answered.

--

--

--

i am a first generation italian-american who grew up in southern new jersey. Life is amazingly beautiful and devastating. Sometimes in the same day.

Recommended from Medium

Letter to My Husband: The Afghan Diplomat in Exile

Murdered and Dismembered by Her Step-Brother: The Story of Becky Watts

And then…

Coping With Grief: Familial Illness

Forgiving the Ghost of My Father

Red Beans Roasting by the Open Fire

My Father was Not a Pedophile

imagine getting blocked by a child for saying “no”.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
adriana suriano

adriana suriano

i am a first generation italian-american who grew up in southern new jersey. Life is amazingly beautiful and devastating. Sometimes in the same day.

More from Medium

Amplifying Wellness‍

Book Review: How to Change by Katy Milkman: The Science of Getting from Where you are to Where you…

Why I’m Giving Up All Art Courses in 2022