We are our fathers’ sons and daughters.
A colleague of mine saw the passing of his dad over spring break this year. Mine died on the day before spring break ten years ago. I didn’t know his dad the way others in our community did. I knew mine better than anyone, next to my mom. His dad was a P.E. teacher, just like he is now. My own was a roofer and then a city building inspector, a rule follower, just like I am now. His dad left his mom to this world. I know that one by heart.
I don’t know what to say. “I’m sorry,” played like a broken record for days and weeks on end and left a vacancy when the world kept moving forward. “Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family” is true enough. “Time will make this better,” was actually infuriating, as I didn’t want another minute to pass by without him in it.
What I really want to say is that–just like I hope my dad still shines in me–I can tell the man your father was in the man you are today.
What I really want to say is that I know how I experience my sadness and my grief, and yet have no idea what this must be like for you.
What I really want to say is that I am grateful to know that we both stand in faith on days like this, relying on God to work his will in us, to take our fathers and keep them, to bring us back together one day.
We are our Father’s sons and daughters. So too, are our sons and daughters. I pray that the minutes pass slowly before they will ever have to hear what others say when they don’t quite know what to say.
I am participating in the 9th annual Slice of Life Challenge hosted by Two Writing Teachers.