It’s been 6 months since my daddy left this earth. I try really hard not to put importance on days, but, let’s be honest, dates are often blaring reminders of the best and worst things that have ever happened to us.
I refuse to forget about the good in an attempt to ignore the bad.
I wasn’t sure how I would feel today. Kind of because 6 months means it’s possible to survive without my dad for half a year, but mostly because every day that passes is another sliver of proof that this fate is truly real. Most mornings I wake up and have to convince myself again—I don’t know if that will ever change. I don’t know if I’d want it to.
I guess there’s this weird part of me that is worried I’ll forget him. His loud voice, infectious laugh, giant hands filled with callouses and wrinkles and lots of well-deserved touchdown receptions. I’m worried that each day I wake up knowing he is gone from this earth, a little bit less of him will be left here with me. And eventually there will be nothing left.
If that means waking up every morning with the notion that he is 100% still here, so be it.
One thing I know for certain is that I couldn’t have changed it if I tried. It’s taken me 6 months to accept that, but I am giving myself the gift today of saying it out loud.
I couldn’t’ have changed it.
People are born, and so they will die, and we live most of our lives clawing and clinging and reaching for some sort of proof that that single fact alone is wrong. Everything that comes together must eventually fall apart, and human life is no different.
I have replayed that day more times than I can count: the Monday morning ignorant bliss, the phone ringing, the words, the kitchen floor.
This almost always turns into a backtracking of events in which I blame and question and convince myself I could have changed the fate. But if it wasn’t going to be that Monday, it would have been another day following.
People are born so they can die and we don’t get to determine how long the space in between is going to be.
My dad’s space was up, and I’d like to believe he’s gone somewhere so wonderful that he wouldn’t choose to come back here even if he was given the option to. I’ve stopped viewing him as lost, and I’ve discovered the hope within myself to, instead, consider him found.
In the past 6 months, I have cried enough tears to fill an ocean. But somewhere in the current, I caught a wave and rediscovered my smile. Life these days has been a pretty consistent mix of drowning underwater and reaching for the shore, but I’ve learned to find peace in the days my head stays above water long enough to see the rays of the sun or the glow of the moon.
People are born, and so they will die.
It’s important to accept that fact, but it’s imperative to understand the difference between the two.
My dad isn’t here, but I am. My dad isn’t alive, but I am.
And until I find him again,
wherever he may be,
I will choose to honor him with the way I spend
my space in between.