Grampa’s jacket

I can’t find my grandfather’s jacket.

It’s an ugly, dirty jacket that’s too big for me. I look like a bag lady in it.

When I was 12 I had a flu I’ll remember forever. On the first day of it, my grandparents were over for dinner. I was balled up on the couch with chills.

Grampa crouched by me, kissed my forehead and took off his jacket. My eyes were closed, but I remember feeling him drape it over me. It was warm from him — a curing, comforting warmth. I haven’t found that same relief from fever chills since.

Decades later, he kept Tootsie Rolls in the pockets for my children. He always had them there. I imagine him filling those pockets before he left the house.

My children were 4 and 6 when he died of an early morning heart attack.

He used to call my daughter ‘The Baby.’ He must have been having delusions in his last moments, because right before he died he said, ‘The Baby’s bringing me cookies.’

She’s 17; I still call her The Baby.

And I’m hysterical, because I can’t find the jacket.

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2 Responses to “Grampa’s jacket”

  1. gunky Says:

    it’s in a safe place. you would never have tossed it or lost it, and neither would your housemates. this is what i tell myself when i wonder where something of my gramma’s is. i know it’s around – i just can’t put my finger on it.

  2. T. Says:

    I found my grampa’s jacket!

    It was in my son’s bedroom closet in the old house. (We’re still slowly moving out.)

    It’s like 85 degrees here.

    I look ridiculous.

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