Today, as my life back home called, I missed Dad. I wanted to call him and tell him about the choices I’m facing. He never gave me much advice. He’d listen to me, sometimes cutting me off if my story meandered and he’d already gotten the gist, and he might tell me what he thought or he might just say, “hmph” and change the topic. That was the way he was. I used to think he was distant and unresponsive, but I came to appreciate him in these last two years. Dad offered what he had to offer. It took me a long time to see the generosity in that.
Missing Dad hurts, but it hurts in a way I can live with. I miss him because my life feels richer and better for him having been in it. And I can live with that easily.
My mourning for my loss is all animal instinct. It defies comprehension and nips at my heels when I least expect it. I don’t wish he was here, and I don’t wish things were different. His death has been a continued gift, and our history has made me stronger and better than I could be on my own. I don’t have regrets about this. I know Dad loves me, and he knows I love him.
But still, for now I’m in mourning.