I Found a Dime

“I found a dime,” he sang, “and then I lost it.” A cheeky smile spread across his face. “And then I found it again!”

He sang that, every time he found a dime on the ground. The superstition was about pennies. I was never sure where dimes fit into the scheme of things. Like many of my father’s oddities, I didn’t ask then why he did that. Years after his death, I posed the question to my godfather, who had been my father’s closest friend.

Marc shrugged. “I don’t know. I think he was just being silly.”

It’s something so inconsequential. Finding loose change on the ground and then making a silly song about it. He probably did it to bring a smile to a daughter’s face that didn’t smile often enough. Or maybe there was a childhood connection. It probably meant nothing at all. And, yet, it still bothers me because it’s a question for which I will never find an answer.

Last night, I was working out in the gym. I was having a bad night. My husband’s deployment weighed on me. Though I had been left on my own for long stretches before, this was different. A mere few weeks in and I already hated my quiet, mostly empty house. I also felt overwhelmed by household duties, organizations I had been stupid enough to volunteer for, and my own stagnating writing project. I pumped through the exercises, chance of injury be damned, just so I could go home and watch Monster Quest on Amazon Prime. The clank of weights and chatter of late night gym rats grated on my nerves.

As I moved from one machine to another, something silver caught my eye. A dime. Right there. Next to the preacher’s curl. My father’s singsong voice wafted through my mind as I bent down to pick up the coin.

It didn’t magically make my night better. My worries didn’t evaporate. And I was once again reminded of the mystery of my father’s love of finding dropped dimes. But, for a brief moment, it felt like he had laid his hand on my arm and reminded me that I’m not nearly as alone as I think I am.

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