If I seem a little sad today, it’s because I am. My brother called me this morning bright and early to tell me that my dad died. He collapsed because of a heart attack and never got up again. So I am sad because I don’t have a dad any more.
I’m also sad because I actually haven’t had a dad for quite a long time. When I was 14 he moved away to take a job. My mom and brother and I joined him in Alabama once our school year was over, but I never really got my dad back. I lived with him, but he wasn’t around very much because he was busy working and going to school and other stuff. The I finished high school and went away to college. I was mostly home on the weekends, but….
Then I got married. My parents moved away again. I saw him on Christmas, but…. Then my mom called me several years ago to tell me that Dad was having an affair and their marriage was over. He moved even farther away. I talked to him on the phone every once and a while. But he was busy with his new wife and her kids and I was busy with my life. We just didn’t have much in common. Plus, I was very angry with him for leaving and breaking up my family.
The last time I saw him, was right after my daughters were born. I was recovering from major surgery and major, life threatening, pregnancy complications and my girls were in the NICU. He came to visit. Things were ok. Then just before he left, he decided to have a “talk” with me about the way I treated his wife. Apparently, I wasn’t making enough effort and I wasn’t friendly enough. I think I promised to make more effort. But then Hurricane Katrina hit and we had one preemie in the hospital, one preemie at home, and no electricity. Then preemie #2 came home on oxygen, and we were trying to deal with all of her medical issues. And Hurricane Rita hit. Then he wanted to come and visit again, this time with the wife that I wasn’t making enough effort to get along with. And I said no. And he was mad at me and I was still mad at him. We talked on the phone a few times after that. But then the phone call stopped. There were a few cards exchanged. And he forwarded my a few of those emails that always get forwarded, but I never replied and we never talked again. And now he is gone. And I don’t have a dad any more. And that is why I seem a bit sad today.