“This is the last time I will be buying you a present for your birthday.. and this is the last time I will be acknowledging your birthday. It doesn’t mean I don’t love you, and it doesn’t mean I won’t be buying presents for you anymore. But I can’t celebrate birthdays anymore. I don’t believe in them.” And then I responded to him, “I know dad.”
-Every year since then, around fall time- And I remember, it was the feast of Tabernacles. I must have been around the age of 11, 12, maybe 13.. I just couldn’t hold back the tears. But every year. And now this one. The year that I turn 30. It’s 6 months after my father died, and it finally dawned on me, not too long ago. Ever year around my birthday, I feel sad, lonely, empty, frustrated and lost. It was the summer before that last birthday where I said “Dad, you talk about Yahweh too much.” And now, six months after father left me, I realize that the pain that comes around this time every year, is the pain I felt when my father left me when I was just a boy who’s feet could barely touch the ground from the swivel chairs in any local Hardees.
My father’s message was sugar coated with one last gift that I wanted, along with ketchup coated French fries. I remember dipping them into the ketchup as he told me. But this was happening all along. It wasn’t this moment that set this emotional platform, but it was everything that happened during this time. And again, it wasn’t until after he was fully gone, did I start to realize Why I felt this way annually.
And then I wonder how long it would have taken a shrink to get this out of me. More importantly, how much would it have cost to do this. Because as if I have a job that has That kind of medical insurance. Or parents to afford it. I never bought a self help book, or even thought about it. And now, I still can’t justify it. Nor would I sacrifice mere financial security on a shrink to compensate the position either. True prudence doesn’t allow for such manipulation, only that which comes from self honesty. More or less taking the eye’s off ones feet while walking the path of life.
My life just passed before my eyes before moving me to write this down. One verison of it anyway. It sure is a story, after all. But I think that we all are born with various weights, moreover, we can’t choose our parents. And know, we really don’t analyze the life of a loved one until after they’re gone. Because only then, can we truly get an image of their life from start to finish. It’s funny in a certain light, how much different our lives can be from those of our parents. I can’t believe how much different I am from my mother and father. No one could have predicted how much different my life would be from theirs. And none the less, I continue on this walk in life, separated from them, and only in my dreams to seem to communicate to them with full honesty on both sides.
“You wanna know My story?” Shit..
Part of the battle comes with my everyday walk through life. Do I acknowledge consciously everything that I’ve gone through, and continue to go through? What does it mean to let it go? Forget about it? Besides, the only people I’ve ever heard say the words “Just forget about it” or “Let it go” couldn’t be bothered by anything real or didn’t seem to have to deal with any real problems; none outside their ipod breaking anyway. And now, do I pose the question to myself, “Do I have an ego about the fact that life has poised such great moments in my life?” Because that’s a battle too; if I want to be honest with myself. Because that ego steps in and wants to say “Fuck you” to the person who says “What do you have to be stressed out about?” or “Just move on.” Like I haven’t been trying for the past 25 years. Shit.. You wanna know MY story? Sit your ass down, because if you actually had a story, I sure as hell know I wouldn’t be saying this to you. (And thankfully my friends don’t make me feel like I need to them this.)
With enough grey hairs and a sore back to feel a lot older, I turn 30 in a couple days. I don’t feel 20, I feel older than 40. Feeling more intelligent and skillful than ever, I continue feel distant from answers and even the desire to find them. Maybe a third of my life has passed? If I’m lucky or unlucky, but then value judgements in the end have nothing to do with them, because it is what it is. All I can do is continue going for the ride. The trajectory has been this, up until now, and where will it take me? Six months after the hardest moment in my life I turn 30, only to realize that the pain I’ve felt every fall for the past 25 years was because my father in part, left me then. And now that he’s completely gone from this earth, I’m beginning to see that. One more lesson on how life is particularly odd, I suppose.