So to finish my thought… months later…
I had not realized that my dad had died on the day that I had my impromptu “Last Night on Earth” experiment. I found out a few days later when I saw a friend post on Facebook about the anniversary of HIS father’s passing was a few days before… on the same date. I wrinkled my forehead. I counted backwards from the date, and realized our fathers passed on the same date, though years apart. I was a bit dumbfounded, as I rarely forget dates and certainly not the date of the day my father died. Was I preoccupied? Well, heck.. when WASN’T I? My life went at what seemed like 1,000 miles per hour all the time.
I guess what messed with me was the fact that my father was so important to me, and I miss him so much and I had just let the anniversary of his death slip from my mind. I wondered what my dad would think about that. And oddly enough, that is where I found my solace.
I believe in my heart that my father would prefer me to forget the anniversary of his death. Because my life is here on Earth, and he is not. He would encourage me to never forget him, but he would also want me to not find a day to spend mourning him for the sake of mourning or the sake of …what? He is in SUCH a better place and is at peace. Why would I mourn that? What I am mourning is MY loss. My personal notice of his absence. Well I do that all the time, not just October 20th. He would want me to spend a night enjoying the company of my dearest friends and my husband. No one knows better than he, who died at 56, how precious these moments we have with our loved ones are. He would want me to forget this death, and celebrate my life. If I didn’t get that message from his early passing, then I would be a slow learner indeed. My dad wants me to LIVE.
He would want me to BE in the moment. To love the ones I am surrounded by at the time I draw a breath. To celebrate our joys and happiness. To FIND the joy and peace in each moment. A little more than six months after I missed a day of remembrance for my father, I am finally finishing the third part of this post. The last six months have been a roller coaster in ways that a very few know. But I have come through it so much wiser and eternally grateful for the lesson of living in the moment. Of loving the ones in my life and celebrating the short time we are together. My biggest lesson is a second chance at life, and love, and friendship and they all culminate with gratitude.
I am grateful for my father who taught me so much, and a great deal of that was what NOT to do in life. I am grateful that in the short time I have left – be it days or decades, I will not squander my chance to bring joy to my life in a conscious way.