Today is Remembrance Day.
It’s always a big deal in my family, because my dad is a WW2 Veteran. He fought a battle so that we can be free. But now he’s fighting his own battle. He’s fighting demons in his mind, and they’re brought on by that horrible “D” word called dementia. Every year for the last, I don’t know how many years, many members of our family gather from B.C. and Alberta, to be with Dad on this special day, remembrance day. The days leading up to it are usually exciting for him, as he looks through pictures and we write on his calendar to remind him we are all going to be together. You see, pictures are all my dad has now, and they bring him the most joy, because they allow him to go back in time, perhaps with just a little bit of reminding as to who is who. In the top image, he points to his siblings and names each one. It’s a good day when he can do that. Just think for a moment, if you had no printed pictures. No way of going back to a cherished time and place. The demons in your head growing ever so stronger until you don’t even know yourself anymore. That is my biggest fear. Not having enough pictures to remind me of who I was, how I started, who loved me and where I lived. I could go on and on about that topic, and someday I will. But for now it’s all about my dad. Our dad. Our hero. Our veteran. The one who brought us freedom, while so much was taken from him. He lost his baby brother in that war. And he talks about him today with tears in his eyes. He remembers. Perhaps a little too much, about what went on in that war. But soon he won’t. And perhaps that’s a good thing, a blessing. Because right now, too many bad memories are surfacing, and he’s getting tired. Tired of having to remember. So we will remember for him, when he’s gone, and pictures are all we have left.