Friday, September 17, 2010


There are common threads of humanity that are laced through everyone. A new baby (and fatherhood or motherhood), a wedding, and the death of a loved one. We can all relate to the universality of these concepts.

Last month, one particular thread was tugged within me; my Father died. After months of chemotherapy treatments and outpatient infusions, his body could no longer sustain life. He died peacefully in the company of his wife, father-in-law, and son-in-law. I was not there, but I had been with him the days and nights preceding this moment. I am thankful for that. There is no need to tell all the back story, the feelings I am left with, or the shape that my life now takes. Anyone that has lost a parent knows inside them what I feel. It is different than losing a spouse or a child. We all expect to bury our parents for that is the tide of nature. But, much in the same way, the death of those loved ones have their own thread.

And, the love and support that has been pulling on this thread from those around me has been amazing. From coworkers, family and friends there has been an outpouring that I was truly not expecting; nor do I fully understand how to appreciate (yet). My husband and daughter have anchored me to them so I cannot drift off in pain. For all of this, I am humbled and grateful. Each day begins in the present, but finds itself winding through my dreams and memories searching for that comforting and peaceful thought that can set my world back on course. I have yet to find it.

But what currently has me filled with regret is that I have several friends over the years that have lost a parent. And, while I stood behind them as they mourned the loss of their Mom or Dad, at that time I had no concept of the weight of such pain. I should have hugged more and sent less "thinking of you notes". I should have listened more and said " I am sorry" less. For it was my own fear of real emotion that kept me from just letting them talk, cry and just be. These are the true gifts of friendship. I hope to return this favor and many more in the future. But, for now, I have my own grief to embrace. It is changing how I look at the world and how I want to be perceived.

No comments: