Someone told me to pay attention to how people respond to my grief by being aware of who told me to suck it up and who would not run if I stood up and screamed.
I thought about the screaming part for a while and wondered what happen I started screaming, if I howled and started sobbing. What would people do?
Who would run away? Who would look away? Who would stay?
Who would offer comfort?
Would it scare my kids?
It is not behavior people have seen me exhibit.
Ok, some of you have seen me yell, playfully and angrily.
Some of you have been the focal part of that anger, but none of you have seen that other side because it is not really me.
Don’t know if I could just let go and do it, but if I did…
The house is empty and even my stalwart companion, the dog has left, leaving me with a noticeable silence.
I have done this before, lived this life more than once but this time feels different,
This time feels much more like the harbinger of the days when the children will be living their own lives and I’ll joke about being this much closer to getting them off of the payroll.
It is one of those things every parent talks about, the time when our offspring take flight and help us see we did a proper of raising them.
Have we prepared them to be self sufficient people of good character who contribute to society and help make the world a better place?
And if they aren’t is it because they can’t or won’t?
Do we hold any responsibility for where they stand?
Some people I know have told me our children are a reflection of us and that we ought to be very concerned about the answers to these questions but I don’t hold this view.
I haven’t been a perfect father but I don’t think it is possible. Doesn’t mean I haven’t striven to be as close to it as I can achieve but I don’t lose sleep about every failure…just some.
Dad and I talked about this and I told him about things I didn’t appreciate and shared my irritation about some things.
Sometimes he shrugged his shoulders and sometimes he gave me “life is hard all over” but it didn’t irritate me as it did as a teen.
I understood and even if I saw it as an excuse for a poor choice he could have avoided I still appreciated it.
We’re human. We’re fallible. We have our own hopes and dreams.
Some realized. Some lost.
I told the reflection in the mirror to buckle up.
“We can’t keep doing what we have been doing. Can’t keep living like this, it is unsustainable.”
He repeated the words back at me and said ‘remember when I cared.”
That’s What It Has Felt Like
That is what life has felt like the last few weeks.
It has been a hand that hasn’t worked properly because one finger hasn’t been a team player.
One finger has been injured, dysfunctional and fighting against the rest of us.
It is not going to continue because changes will be made even if I have to swim upstream or jump off of cliffs and learn how to fly as I fall.
The beauty of bachelor life is I am my own boss again…mostly.
Haven’t won the lottery or inherited cash so there are other masters to be concerned about, but the chains are loose for the moment or close to be shorn off.
Got the endless possibilities of summer and days upon days to fill however I choose.
Wonder what it will all look like?
Could be fun finding out.