Today, the 15th, marks 9 months since Dad died.
It is the one day in the month that sorrow completely reigns in my soul. Even without me being aware of the dates, I can tell from the way my heart, body and mind responds to me that the 15th is approaching. My entire being lets me know. It is a marked date buried deep in my unconscious.
You see, I never thought Dad would one day die. He was MY Dad afterall – so full of life, funny, dedicated, hardworking and so beautiful. My father was a beautiful man. So when they told me that he was gone on that dreadful Monday last November, my first reaction was shock, then denial, then excruciating pain. It’s normal, they say – infact, they say these are some of the stages that people go through when they lose their loved ones. It makes me want to scream. People talk too much, even about things they couldn’t possibly understand.
When it comes to sorrow and pain, today is the one day of the month that I have to make a conscious decision to remember. To remember that my God still sits on His throne and that He is intensely aware of me and my beautiful family. That He is mindful of us, of my mother who has lost so much more than I have- she has lost a husband, a lover, a soulmate and a friend. I remember that despite the dark clouds that gather above my head, God has not left me. And more importantly, that “precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of His saints”.
I remember that it’s okay, so I let the tears flow until I can hardly breathe. I mourn because I miss my beautiful father. I miss knowing that when I go home he’ll gather us around for our usual family meetings; that he will ask for a cup of tea a few hours after dinner; that I will see him scribbling away on his writing pad; that I will see him loving Mom the way I want my future husband to love me; that I will listen to his voice as he tells a story in that mesmerizing way of his.
I will think about what he has achieved in us, his family. Looking at us from the outside, you would think that we are just an ordinary family. But we know better. Our lives are intertwined and interwoven with grace, favour and destiny. He was a wonderful father and I and my brothers and sisters are a living testament to that fact. The true worth of a man is measured by the objects he pursues, and my father pursued God, family and character.
He had a gift. He would tell stories in a way that imprinted them on your heart and soul. From the time we were little babes bouncing on his knee and jumping on his back, to the time when we were fully grown developing our own distinct selves, he told stories. It was what he did, what he loved. Whether he voiced them or wrote them down, he always made them come alive. With him, I share this passion.
So when I stand up to take my unique place in the literary world, I’m doing it for the both of us. I will honour him and his talent. That is not a promise. It is my destiny.
Today, I remember that I am my father’s daughter.