There is a certain fragrance in my life, that transports me instantly back to my childhood. To sleepovers and giggles, to whacks across my backside, lazy summer days at the public pools, and trips on the bus across town. To long hugs, nuzzling my face into the crook of your neck, sitting at your dresser dabbing cream onto my face and arms. Your cream. Your smell. Your love.
I cannot smell that cream without a flood of emotions and love barreling into my heart. I cannot smell that cream without a gut-wrenching sucker-punch to my psyche. I cannot smell that cream without thinking of you.
It’s been 20 years since I smelt your love, and almost 17 years since you left us all.
But I am grateful that I have a way back to you, a way to remember you when my memories seem to fail you.