Letters to F.A.

My in-laws felt pretty strongly that Z and Q shouldn't come for Daddy's memorial.  As memorials go, his was more of a celebration of his life rather than a lament of his death but I could see where they were coming from.  At any rate, I didn't feel strongly enough (or possibly strong enough?) to fight them on it.

Even so, I felt like the kids needed some kind of ritual to mark F.A.'s passing and say their good-byes.  (My dad named himself F.A. - short for Favorite Ancestor - when I said that 'Jefe' (spanish for boss) was not a suitable grandpa name.)

Almost four years ago, I lost my friend Heather to scleroderma.  I had just had Q, so I was unable to attend her funeral.  Heather requested a balloon release at her funeral.  I released a balloon in her honor from Small Town.  It made a real impression on Z.  Even at two, she seemed to really grasp that I was sad because Heather had gone to heaven and wouldn't be coming back.

I figured this was as good a way as any for the kids to tall F.A. good-bye.  We drew/colored pictures and wrote notes to F.A.   We tied the notes to helium balloons and released them into the sky.  I told the kids we were sending letters to F.A. in heaven.

We watched the balloons float up into a perfectly clear blue sky until we couldn't see them any more. 

Good-bye F.A.  You were a great grandfather, father and man.  We miss you.

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