During the minutes immediately surrounding my father's death in January, a "person" stole his wallet off of his body. Almost unfathomable, isn't it? We have a pretty good idea of the person responsible...but still no wallet.
The mental image of someone doing that to my father was almost more than I could handle. I felt physically sick. I plotted revenge. I swore that I would find justice. Nearly two months later I can honestly say that all of those feelings are still present to some extent, but it is getting better.
The loss of money was not really an issue. Daddy kept his cash in a separate pocket. Credit cards were cancelled within hours....and thankfully none had been used. Daddy's name was not by any means a common name, so the chances of identity theft are slim. Even security was arranged for my parents' house during the time we were gone for the funeral. With all of those concerns taken care of, you'd think it wouldn't have been a big deal.
But I wanted the wallet. Not for the money, or the credit cards, or the license and social security card. I wanted the wallet back because for as long as I can remember, whenever Daddy would pull his wallet out in front of me, I'd inevitably take it from him and flip through the photo inserts. I knew that my dad had some photos of all of us growing through the years. I clearly remembered the photo of us on the couch. Try as I may, I could not let go of the image of the "person" who stole the wallet finding no money in it and throwing it to the ground, photos and all. I imagined cars driving over it, rain ruining it over time. My brother, on the other hand, immediately remembered the $2 bill that Daddy had carried most of his life "for luck". THAT is what he wanted back. As much as I mourned the photos, I could tell that my brother equally mourned the loss of that $2 bill.
Daddy's co-workers searched the area for the wallet. They searched dumpsters and checked the ditches. They did all they could. The police interviewed the "person", but as you can imagine, with no proof, there was nothing they could do. So we moved on. Still with the images in my mind.
Then about 4 weeks after his death my mother was putting the phone on the charger and looked up on the shelf in their office and saw something. Curious, she reached up and pulled down three sleeves from a photo insert. From my daddy's wallet. They were no longer connected to each other, and the best we can figure is he put them there on the shelf until he could get a new insert to replace the old, worn-out one that had fallen apart.
Those particular inserts, miraculously, contained the photos I remember so fondly, photos of the grandkids....and the $2 bill.
Mom came for a visit last weekend. I took the wallet inserts and scanned them into my computer so that I will never forget the mysterious world we live in.
Some moments are just too precious not to share.