Meet Daphne. Daphne is one of my very first memories and a treasured stuffed animal. I was three or four years old and sick as a dog. I remember laying on our old brown sectional couch dozing in and out of sleep feeling hotter than the sun. When I woke up in the afternoon there was my dad with Daphne. A new stuffed animal was a big deal back then.
Why? It’s just a run to the store, right? Not back then. I grew up on a farm in the middle of nowhere. The nearest store, other than the small market in town, was a good hours drive away. We didn’t make that trip all that often and when we did it was usually for machinery parts with a side of grocery shopping. So this dog was a huge deal to me. And coming from my dad made it even more special.
Daphne had a permanent spot on/in my bed until I graduated high school – not even kidding. Then I went to college, got married, started moving around the world and I lost track of her. So when my daughter came walking out of the back storage area of our garage the other day with Daphne in hand I think my heart grew three sizes grinch style.
She means even more to me now. Right around his 50th birthday my dad was diagnosed with CMML, a type of Leukemia. He wasn’t given long to live, a couple years at most but he hung on for seven. We thought he was going to beat the cancer and be with us for several more decades. But cancer is a cruel bitch and he lost his battle in 2003. He gave me so much. So many memories, stories, life lessons, laughs, my home – I’m even named after him.
And now I have Daphne back. It’s a good day.