When my father died, I gave his computer to Goodwill after keeping it in an honored place on the floor of my office where I would look at it and think about whether giving it to him had made anything easier about the year and a half he spent grieving my mother’s death before he died, and wish, but not, that I knew the password that would let me search his brief online life to find evidence of relief, some track of his sadness lessening, but in the end I had to give up and let the question be erased.


Written in response to The Daily Post prompt: Your life without a computer: what does it look like?


5 Comments on “Erased

  1. You opened the door for your dad when you gave him the computer. He closed it when he passed away. Somehow, I imagine he found solace in connecting online, but I’m not sure you would have by doing the same. I think you made the right decision by erasing both the question and the answer.

  2. I introduced my dad to the computer when he came to live with us after my mother’s death. I helped him set up a email account and he was able to touch base with old friends. I, too, never checked his account after his death, but I knew his password. It was “genius” and he could never remember how to spell it. It still makes me smile.

  3. I watched my father traipse around the world for the first year and a half as being at home was too painful. Then he slowly descended into the dark spaces of dementia where he travelled a round circuit in safety wearing out endless shoes until he grew too tired to walk anymore. For those of us who loved him it was the never ending mourning for a man who disappeared leaving behind a living dry husk. His death was a release for us all gifting us with the relief of grief with closure.

  4. Sometimes imagining if it was helpful, is better than “reading the journal”. You did the best you could by giving him the opportunity.

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