WANE ALLEN LEAVITT
(Christmas 2010 wearing the hat and scarf Naomi made for him)
The day after my eloquent sister finally writes a post not about my significantly missing father, I finally get the courage to do just that... address the hole in the fabric of my life. Unlike her I do not journal beautiful meaningful things on a daily basis, I am ever afraid to write down the things that run round in my head. Trust me no one should be subjected to my inner crazy. And so I pen what I feel now and the pent up moments since January 28th 2011.... already 7 months.
When I come home my parents cottage is physically linked to my home... they build life and memories out my back door, this was a miracle, and anyone who knows my dad knows this. He said "never" he would never live east of the Mississippi, and he meant it. It only took a true act of God to get him to come up with the idea, I would not have even for a moment thought to ask him to come. In November of 2009 his heart refused to pump all that it should and he had men save him from his pizza and coke, but God saved him from his mind... troubled and good as it was. He woke up from a comma with convictions never spoken before, he awoke anew. I called his room and he spoke the words "we are coming, save the cottage for us" I did not believe him, I confirmed with my sister sitting next to him. I thought it was a phase, a blind moment of post heart surgery crazy. He knew though... things were different. And they came. I have the huge metal wood burning stove in my garage to prove it.
Wayne Allen Leavitt lived in my back yard, he mowed grass ever growing, shoveled snow ever falling and loved kids ever laughing. He lived in my life. He drew tree house plans, played guitar and taught cords, set up a leather shop, made memories. He came with us to dinner at friends... and enjoyed it. We have a group of friends that we do a family book club with and he and mom read a Christmas carol with us and marveled at the way our children learn. He read with Ellie, taught drafting with Connor and took Naomi to eat bagels and work on a book together. We listened to music, watched movies and ate meals together. He worked in the Temple with mom. He made things magic like I knew he would.
One night while Greg and my mom were out of town I went out on a girls night out with some friends, I called dad at 11pm and asked if he had seen "the Devil" is it too scary I asked, no he said "have fun". I watched that movie... and it was. SCARY. When I came home in the early hours of the morning, nervous like a little girl, there was my house... all lit up inside, inviting. He came out to meet me and put his arm around me, he waited up for me like I was still his little girl. And I am, and he took care of me.
He got me coke when I was grouchy and needed one. We went to lunch and discussed things like friends, things he needed to work out. He and mom became peaceful together. He healed here... in my back yard.
He healed in so many ways, even his heart... the heart of the spirit. The heart of his body was still working its way toward leaving us. We ate split pea soup on Thursday, he spilled his glass of water and blamed Connor on the other end of the table, we laughed. He wore his blue Mr Rogers sweater and stood in the entry and said goodnight to us. It was our last goodnight. He went to bed with her.. a rare thing for a man with an owl's disposition, they held hands and he said he loved her. It was her last I love you.
My phone rang while I was deep in the place of dreams, yet I woke. Mom was yelling his name... I knew. I screamed for Greg to wake and follow, we ran bare foot through the snow to the cottage. My hands in trying to save this man broke the bones I so recently hugged. My hands. He started to breath and I thought this means life, we have given him life. But God gives life, and his was to be over. I did not know this yet and my mom and I followed the flashing lights. When they told us, I asked... and I meant it "are you sure? Can you check again, I just saw him... he was breathing." No they tell us, we are sorry.
When seeing someone who has filled your life with love, anger and joy for the last time, you might think it would be quiet... My mom talked to him, and told him of her ever faithful love. I laughed at the scratches on his huge strong hands from him provoking the cat. My hands trembled as I touched his for the last time. Greg stood and watched us say goodbye.
It was a goodbye to his physical presence in my life. But not a goodbye in the long run. Things have been hard. My mind wanders to the running of bare feet far to often. My body thinks it is ailing from every harm possible, my heart beats to fast and I worry. Naomi misses him with an ache I can not alter. Connor longs to fish with him. Ellie wears his Mr Roger sweater to ease the hurting. Nanna talks to him to work things out. Greg is a rock for two women now.
I know where he is... he has come to me to help me in so many ways. Real ways. He has spoken and I have heard. This I can hold forever and know that my Father... my Dad.... is OK.