Touched by loss. Empowered through community.

An Orange Pick-Up Truck

Tuesday, September 5, 2017
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An Orange Pick-Up Truck


I did something today that I know all of us have done.  I read a paper that my freshman in high school daughter wrote for an English assignment that she left open on my computer.  She hadn’t presented it to me to read, but I believe it was left there for me to get a further glimpse into the daily loss that she feels without her dad.  It has been 3 years since Steve’s death.  My freshman is the middle child.  So was Steve.  They had a connection unlike the relationship that he had with our other children.  Not that he wasn’t close with the others, but there was truly something unique in their relationship.

I hope her English teacher is emotionally ready before she reads this paper.   I don’t think she knows my daughter’s story.  The high school is new to us and there are 1,000 + freshman.  It was steeped with symbolism, raw emotion and pain.  For as long as I can remember, she has always wanted an orange pick-up truck.  I am not sure why.  She is a girl who wants to be different and stand out in her own way.  She is not afraid of speaking her mind and doesn’t conform.  I love that about her.  Her paper has the orange pick-up truck theme.  It talks about how orange is the combination of 2 colors: yellow and red.  She ascertains maybe it represents two people. She talks about how the truck travels the same path, day after day until it is pushed into a muddy, dark ditch in the road. The truck is alone waiting for someone to come and pull it out of the dark into the light. The hope stands strong for a while. Then the yellow truck comes. The big strong red truck is nowhere in sight. The yellow truck can only do so much.

I sobbed reading it, knowing that as the yellow truck, I am doing all I can.  Providing all the supports possible, but nothing can bring her Dad back. I wish I could.   

I don’t want to leave you on a sad note.  I do feel like my daughters and I are all winning right now.  All 3 are in new schools this year and excelling at what they each enjoy doing. I will be starting a new job and we are just finishing a renovation of our home.  A fresh start for all of us.  Our story isn’t over, but a significant chapter of it is and it is one that has left its indelible mark.

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