i wish him well

where do i go when it’s all just too much on my own?

finally, a frank conversation

he has been dying for years

lung cancer, colon cancer, ileostomy, colostomy, chemotherapy

blood clot or tumor or maybe a mass on his bladder

his wife cried throughout conversation

he has a DNR

this is the good news

he is in the hospital

in my faith tradition, angels are messengers.

they protect and provide, punish and proclaim.

they are warriors who worship God.

in my being, i cannot find Raphael’s putti cherub nor the winged, great company of the heavenly host, praising God and saying, “glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”

i struggle to believe or even hold the notion that angels protected some but not all at the pulse nightclub or at the twin towers or on egypt flight 804.

so, yesterday, where were the angels when I called?

“it’s too late

where were you when i needed you?

i won’t let you in.

even if you come, i won’t let you in.

i loved you when you were a little girl. i loved you at your wedding.

i have always loved you.”

in january, he called to sing “Happy Birthday” for the first time in my memory.

i am sure he sang it when i was younger, but then again, i am just as sure he never did.

“i’m not afraid to die. i just don’t want to be there when it happens.

i’m on the home stretch. i know i am dying.

three things can ruin your life. fire. flood. divorce. i’ve had them all.

say hi to your brother (not my son).

i refuse to be down in the dumps.

my mom would call me “chick.” she always asked me to take care of my father and i promised her i would. my own dad had a difficult time saying I love you.

you don’t remember moments, you remember memories. i believe i am getting through because people are praying.

i’m sorry.

i didn’t know how to be a good father. from the bottom of my heart now I apologize.

now, just go and have an asthma attack.

your mother and i divorced at the wrong time in your life. i wasn’t, i didn’t know how to be a good father.

you treat salesmen like you treat a dog. treat them right and they’ll love you. if you kick um, they will bite you or run away.”

where do i go when it’s all just too much on my own?

i dissolve in tears. for the father i never had, for the years of rejection, for the manipulation, for the irrational, senseless meaning of his words and intent, even now as he faces death.

i allow myself to enter into the deep loss of daddy grief, emptied of expectations, exhausted by the years of pain, and fall to the floor in release.

as i am emptied, tired and swollen, thirsty and sad, i wonder again, where do i go?

i go within. i do what i know how to do. i breathe. i look for the message. not the why.

i look for what this means. i tell the truth. i find my center. i pray.

“it’s too late”

it is never too late.

“where were you when I needed you?”

it was your responsibility to be there for me, your daughter.

“i won’t let you in.”

i don’t need to be bedside to be let in. i can be there by being here.

“even if you come, i won’t let you in.”

i am already in.

“i loved you when you were a little girl. i loved you at at your wedding.

i have always loved you.”

you did the best you could. i am sure you did when i was younger, but then again, i am just as sure you never did.

and today, if there are angels, i pray they minister peace, even now to his tortured soul, that his passing would be gentle and he would have no fear. i wish him well.

“All will be well, and all will be well, and all manner of thing will be well.” Julian of Norwich

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