I stumbled across this wonderful photo essay, or rather a book, perhaps, called “Days With My Father,” by Phillip Toledano. Go read it it. It takes a few minutes.
I’m going to talk about myself here. His mom died, so he was left to care for his dad, who was in his late 90’s and had no short-term memory. I found myself at once angry that he had so much time with his dad, envious that he was able to be with his dad on the day his dad died, surprised at my heart-felt emotion, and relieved that I didn’t break down and cry at the end of it.
My dad died just over a month ago. I have days that are good – days when I can look at pictures and smile. I have days where I don’t want to believe his death is real. When I refuse to believe it – or maybe refuse to acknowledge the impish beast that nags at me and won’t ever let me forget. Rightfully so. I have days when I just let myself cry. Today, I didn’t call or text or email my mom. I just needed a break from it. I’m beating myself up for being selfish but also relieved that I was (mostly) able to push thoughts of my dad aside, even for a bit.
I have to stop writing now. I’ve gone and made myself cry again. Damn it. Not even just one day?