Each second, we get closer to the end than the beginning. It is up to us to live as fully as we can. Over the weekend, I missed my father. He died closer to 20 years ago than not. Ironically, I can remember the time the phone call came to advise me that he was going to die but I cannot remember the year. Regardless of that gap in my memory, it is my honor to remember the lessons he taught me and to live as he taught me.
He died young. Just recently, my friends started losing their parents and I know their pain. Several have turned to me and asked if it ever gets easy. I am honest and tell them that time does heal some, maybe it just makes the absence not as noticeable but even now, 17 years later, it can move me to tears. I do give them words of advice. Or words of advice I gave myself to make the absence more bearable. On those times, when I miss him most, I remember the lessons he taught me.
Among the lessons he taught me are:
– Show up. Even when it was uncomfortable and unexpected. You never know the power of your presence.
– Cry. If you are moved to tears, do not hide them.
– Befriend people. You might learn something.
– Express your feelings. It is good that people know you care.
– Fear not. Every problem will be solved.
Have faith my friends. If you need to cry, cry. If you need a shoulder to cry on, call me and I will cry with you. Remember, that loved one is with you, even if it is only in your memory.