Ah, the smell of Old Spice. I kept an old bottle of Dad’s. I couldn’t bear to throw out something that smelled like him. I dug it out of a box just now, and now I have the smell of it on my hands. I didn’t mean to – just came across it while I was looking for something else. It’s not quite right though. It’s missing all the nuances that used to mix with the Old Spice smell – the hint of animals and fields and his own human smell. His Sunday smell. I can still see him splashing it on just before we left for church. It belongs with his black leather Bible and his Sunday clothes.

I still miss him like crazy. I still have those moments when the pain chokes me with sudden and unexpected strength. The moments don’t come as often any more, but they still come. And they still grip my throat and make it hard to breath. Viktor Frankl talks about how suffering is like a vapour – it moves into you and occupies every inch of the empty room of your body, soul, and spirit. Grief is like that too. It takes over my whole body when it comes.

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