Today like most days I found myself missing you. I hear a song, look at a photo, see a red cardinal and it triggers an emotion.
The emotion that arises causes such tears, such a feeling of loss, such a heaviness in my heart and I struggle with figuring out how to rationalize all of it.
I am simply a son who misses you so very much. How would I have grown with you here? Who would I have become with your physical presence next me? These are just some of the questions that arise. I am angry at times at you for stealing away the “could have been’s” sometimes and it makes me mad that your every breathing moment wasn’t in the best interest of me and my brother.
I want to scream HOW DARE YOU STEAL OUR LIVES FROM US but to whom would I yell to? your headstone, the sky’s, the old photos? Who please tell me.
You left us with one parent, a broken parent and a continual state of life out of balance. I have nothing to compare it to because this is my only experience. At five and three, my brother and I were not prepared for any of it, and to this day we still aren’t. There is a void in my memory that I continually fight with, struggle to gain a control that will never be, in a continual failed attempt at a memory, a clear as crystal memory of you.
I have glimpses, quick memories of you and for that I am beyond thankful. The few photos of you I cherish and find at times not able to look at because the ache within my heart becomes too much for me. My GOD how I miss the idea of “could have been’s” I just don’t know what to do.
People would say I made it, I survived, that you would be proud of me. Well, isn’t the idea of survival up to interpretation? I think back on childhood and remember just being scared, just feeling alone and unloved, not regarded at all. T
he broken parent re-married and the relationship was beyond toxic, abusive, traumatizing, every horrible and frightening word you can imagine to say the least, but yet we were able to barely maneuver are way through it.
I think back now as an adult to how I maneuvered through life back then, always that feeling of having to think ahead, have a plan. What did I know, nothing, no plan, no anything, but the instinct to make it through each day.
Being witness without realizing it, seeing the slow collapse of a parents willingness to remain engaged, relevant, a protecter for their children changes you. As an adult with life experiences under my belt I can and associate the behaviors to what the parent was going through, dealing with, and just trying to survive themselves. However, I am now a parent myself and can’t internalize or even imagine allowing my child to fall to the side.
Life out of balance is survivable indeed, it’s not easy but it can be done. The void never fills, for me specifically it hasn’t. I believe the older you get the more you learn, the more you rationalize, the more you associate feelings and raw emotions.
It’s ok to acknowledge a hard road travelled, I do, I do it to remind me of the accomplishments I have been able to achieve with the start that I was dealt. What I do know is that there is less tolerance for wasted time, useless conversation, and most importantly toxic relationships regardless of who they are with.
There is so much more to this story, when I am ready. It’s important to understand that everything is related in time, and when comfortable. I miss you so very much, and I know within my heart you are so very proud of me. I see a red cardinal everyday and dream of you often, you are with me, with my daughter, my brother and his children. We love and honor you and now are beginning to realize we achieved because of your hands on our shoulders guiding and shielding us. We love dad.