Sunday, April 1, 2012
My Dad died nine years ago today.
So much has changed since then. Isn't it odd? One day's hardship years later is a memory with a bridge built backwards. A bridge I don't cross so often anymore. Once, I crossed it frequently. I would run back there along those clackety foot-boards over the curve and linger close to the edge and feel the weight behind my eyes.
I'm only 20 years younger than you now Dad. How strange. But this means I understand you so much more. I know your struggles. I know your anger. I know your bitterness. As e.e. cummings said so well "Old age sticks up keep off signs) & youth yanks them down (old age cries No Tres) & (pas) youth laughs." Believe me; I feel I'm in the parentheses now and if it would help I would have a big-ass sign on my lawn if I could.
If I'm older now, am I still your youngest? Not really. I'm not your black sheep anymore, I'm not the one you seemed to be working so hard to change. I'm more like you now and I even see you in the mirror some mornings. And I wonder...how many heartbreaks did you endure while, oblivious, I chattered on and skipped about in my clueless exuberant youth? That's what I understand so well now.
We were so different and yet now, you are the only person I want to talk to.
But I also know what all your worry and anxiety did to you. So I'm trying not to be angry, I'm trying not to struggle so much with the sheer muchness of the world. I'm trying to let go. And since I can't talk to you I have started letting my worries drop like handwritten notes off the side of that bridge. And most days, it's helping.