It was Father's Day and there was this unspoken understanding how important it was to celebrate together, so we gathered without question. For him? For us? For all? Yes…surely all.
His mind was leaking, it had been for years. With each visit we could sense memory and thought siphoned into oblivion, and I think he could, too; there was a vacant desperation in his words.
Before he ran out of time, he was still trying to parent us.
Around a sacred table, he did his best. He clawed for coherence, the present, to be heard. We listened, polite and attentive, trying to fill in the blanks. Adult children who didn't really need him the way he longed to be needed, but who loved him enough to let him believe otherwise.
I knew that moment was important to him, and for once it wasn't about him, it was lesson and legacy. He was trying to help us see in future's dark.
I wrote his words down, chicken scratch on paper now playing hide and seek.
Summer's heat was beginning to rise and I had on a red and white skirt that doesn't fit anymore.
He's been gone 5 1/2 years and today would've been his 81st birthday.
I wish I could still fit in that skirt.
I followed your link and read all of your post about your Father. Wow. Your writing touches my soul with your authentic emotional transparency. You cause me “ponder”-a mark of a great writer. The blog post on how you have learned to value the many things your dad contributed toward who you are today was especially touching. I remember your father from around 1973 and recall him as handsome and fun-loving. You show great wisdom in how you process God’s work of amazing grace toward you. Blessings to you and Lora.
Outside of my own family, Debbie, you’ve probably known me longer than any other reader; there’s something special about that. :). All I can say is THANK YOU for the mark you left on my life all those years ago, for giving of yourself, for encouraging me now. I’ve never forgotten you and have only fond memory. You planted seeds, Dear One, and though I hope they’re still sprouting, I’m thankful for each bloom. I’ll make sure Lora knows you’re thinking of her as well. xo