Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Honor your Father

It has been real difficult for me these past few weeks. At first just a little blue, but not really knowing why. Then came my birthday which I have never handled well. But even that wasn't it. Then I came to realize that I was suppressing what was really bothering me. You see for anyone who has lost their dad, the occasion of Father's Day can be a real depressing thing. But even more so for me because 4 years ago, I lost my Dad to cancer just 2 days before Father's Day. And today is the anniversary of his death.

I never imagined that I would take his death so hard. Don't get me wrong, I loved my Dad. But, I was so much closer to my Mom. My Dad was always there, but whenever I called it was always my Mom that I talked with. Whenever I went to visit, Mom and I would be talking in the kitchen and Dad would just be in the other room. But once he was gone, I found myself wishing I had spent more time with him, that I had gotten to know him better as an adult in the same way that I did with my Mom.

When I was young, I used to love to hear his stories of growing up during the depression and serving in the army during World War II. If it was a real funny story he would be laughing so hard that I couldn't understand him, but I laughed anyway because he was. When I became a teenager it all seemed to change. I kind of took a break from both of my parents for awhile. I blamed them for a lot of things that they didn't deserve. I deliberately set myself apart from them. Actually, probably more from my Mom than my Dad, but the distance was there. I created it.

I eventually grew up and let it all go and was able to develop a solid relationship with my Mom as an adult. But, not with my Dad. It just didn't seem that we had all that much in common. Now I kind of feel bad about that. It took learning he was dying for me to realize how much I appreciated him.

On my Dad's final day, I was there for him as I should have been all along. I stayed and I talked to him for hours. At the moment of his death, I felt a joyous release as his spirit left. Even as I witnessed his departure, I knew he would always remain a part of me. Oddly enough, we are probably closer now than when he was alive. I feel him usually when I have great need and most times it gives me comfort. Except for now on this the anniversary of his death. Grief is funny and can affect you in strange ways. Four years later it is still fresh as if it happened yesterday. It is heavy and presses me down hard. I almost want to feel bad and push away any good feelings. And I push away anyone who tries to help me and shut them down. I don't know, maybe in a way I feel I need to punish myself. I don't want to feel good. I think back on all of the time that I missed with him. I know that he deserved better from me.

As a person and as a writer I can almost always find a positive slant on things. But, not so in this case because it still hurts and I miss my Dad.

So for those of you who still fortunate enough to have your father, honor him with your presence this Sunday.


Blogger Rottlady of the Ozarks said...

I know you probably don't want to hear this, but I'm going to say it anyway. Mary, I'm sure you were a very good daughter in your Dad's eyes. I'm sure he loved you as only a dad can.

We all have our regrets but we can't let them rule our life.

I do hope you are able to put them behind you and move on, he would want you to.

I'm here for you if you need to talk, just call me.

{{{{Hugs Mary}}}}

Love from your friendd, Elizabeth

June 18, 2009 at 7:00 AM  

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