as of last saturday, he's not going to be there anymore.
i didn't realize how sad it made me until i broke down during dinner tonight with b. i'd made a rice casserole. you know, the kind that'll last all week. and we were eating it and having a glass of wine and he turned to me and asked, "what's wrong, jessi?" i stopped chewing and thought about it. i said, "i think maybe it's just pms...i don't really know what's bugging me. i'm just sort of sad." and then, i lost it. i realized why i was upset. and i cried and went on and on and on about how my life has changed. this staple, this flower shop, this part of my life that has been there since i was 12, is gone. and i know my dad will be happier. and that he didn't just close his business, he sold it. so he's walking away with something...with a lot.
but the part that rips my heart out...the part that really hurts is that it's the last "thing" that had his, and my mom's, stamp on it. he opened it with her help when they were still married. we lived down the street then, and it was a place we could walk to on weekends. my first job out of college was right across the street from his shop. and so, i'd stop by several times a week for lunch or just a chat. and even as my parent's marriage fell apart, and mom stayed in the leawood house, and he moved into the loft above his store, the actual store remained a constant. andy the dog was there. and i could visit whenever i wanted to. and last year, when i was going through the hardest time of my life, i sought refuge there often. i'd go up to the loft and sleep during the day when i just couldn't figure out what was wrong with me...in between doctor's appointments and leases to sign. i could go and talk to him because he'd listen. unbiased and with a soft heart. and no matter what came out of my mouth, i was his daughter and he was going to love me unconditionally.
it's not that any of that love is going away. it's just that it's going to have to be more carefully planned. like on weekends or holidays or dinners. because he isn't going to be the flower man anymore. he's going to have another job and he's going to live somewhere else. and i am going to miss what was with my whole heart.
i'm also going to have to start buying flowers somewhere else. and i don't think i can ever get past the thought that no matter where they're from, they're not as fresh as the ones from LeVine.