Tonight was a breath of fresh air (I know, I know, it's cliche - but it's true all the same). When you are grieving, you accept that you are in that dark place but there are times when you want out of it. It doesn't feel good, wanting to escape, but you do want to nonetheless. Right, who am I talking about, you? No, me. There are times when I am so tired and so worn down by the weight of missing my father and longing and wishing and hoping for everything to be different, or at least to have five more minutes and if not that I'll take five seconds.
Every now and then there are people and conversations that - for a moment - take me away from that missing and desperation. Tonight was that way. Tonight was dinner with two friends, and the conversation political. Tonight was about the Pope and President Bush and, well, entirely different conversations than I've had lately. Which is good, I'll take it. But at the same time, there is an energy expense to these conversations and I put forth that energy so that I can join in all the due passion and opinion. And it feels good to argue (debate) something that is not emotional. But it's energy spent and that is from a supply that I don't really have. I'm drained. And vulnerable.
When this evening was over, I got into my car and remembered like a punch in the stomach that I am alone. As soon as I shut the door, I was aware of it in that way that silence is sometimes louder than sound. My world settled gently but painfully around me. I sat in the car tonight and looked at a photograph of my father. He's wearing his red sport coat, holding a glass of wine, looking right into the camera with his beautiful blue eyes. And a tear dropped from my eye. It was time to go home. Time to return to what I am struggling to accept is now my familiar, which is a world without his presence, but one all about when he was once present. I turned the key in the ignition and the radio gave me this:
I’ve seen fire and I’ve seen rain
I’ve seen sunny days that I thought would never end
I’ve seen lonely times when I could not find a friend
But I always thought that I’d see you again.
Yeah, I always thought that I'd see him again.