I spent yesterday both sad and happy as the text messages flew. My mother said the right thing as I was waking up yesterday morning via a few text messages. She asked me to send her memories that popped into my head all day long via text. It was fun to go through memory lane with her as I thought of things that made me smile. That made a tough day of missing Mert easier for me. I am not quite sure why on the anniversary of the death of someone I love I struggle so much but that is my reality. Yesterday’s 23 year anniversary was made easier by exchanging texts all day with my Mom. She and I had fun memories we shared with one another all day long of the things that make us laugh when we remember Mert.
The text message memories included, many things such as lotion on his fingertips in the winter to soak into his very cracked fingers, atomic fireball candy one of his favorites that was almost always hiding behind his seat in his truck, shoes being tied in knots for someone who wouldn’t untie their shoes when coming into our home, a nearly two page paper of details on why my sister Linda needed her ears pierced a second time, being dunked at the lake on vacation, new toys for a long car ride, and so many more. I am just glad that I have fun memories that help me remember a man that played a huge part of who I am today. I am glad he choose to be a part of our lives even if on our first meeting I tried to chase him away by asking a rude question rather loudly at the Bridgeman’s ice cream shop. Yep, I had peppermint bon-bon ice cream that day and on the day before my wedding in his honor. Mert left me with many good memories and I find reminders of him regularly.
I am so grateful for the man that stepped up and agreed to be my stepfather many moons ago. Mert Torgeson made a lasting impact on my life and many other people’s lives. So much so that I gave my daughter really similar initials to his name. I didn’t realize I had done that until I was labeling a toy for show and share at school with her initials. It now makes me smile weekly as get a toy or book ready to send to school with her, I am missing just a letter to spell his name. He would have loved my girl and I am sure from up above he is loving watching how life turned out for me. It sure would be nice to hear him say it but I know deep down he would be proud of me. Likely one of the traits he would be proud of is the patience I have learned in life; it is because of his patience with me when I was growing up. When my kiddo gets upset and I start to lose my cool I try to remember how he always “read” a book while he waited for me to calm down. I am pretty sure the book was often upside down and that he was using it as a way to not laugh at me while I lost it over something so insignificant. The parents that choose us are pretty special people and I am glad that Mert was one of those people that choose to be a part of my life! I am blessed by having his memories with me to this day and I hope I can continue to smile over things that pop into my head about a man I am so grateful for in my life.