Updated: May 30, 2021
Losing a parent is one of the hardest things we face in our lives. Death is inevitable and we’ll all face it in our lives. At some point we lose friends, family, colleagues, etc. It’s not easy to lose someone in your life, especially someone who you care about and have a relationship with.
When we lose someone we tell ourselves and others that time heals all wounds, but when it comes to losing someone, do we ever completely heal? Does time make things easier? No, it doesn’t. But, we can choose to not live in sorrow. To not live in regret for not spending enough time with the person you lost. To not live in regret for all the things you wish you had told that person before they passed. To not live in regret for all those unresolved conflicts that you never got to work out with that person.
Today marks 12 years since my father passed. Part of me wants to say that it has gotten easier over time, but I know that’s not true. Some days is definitely easier than others, but everyday I still feel that empty space in my heart. Something is definitely missing, and it’s my father.
My father was a lot of things, he also wasn’t a lot of things. There are a lot of unresolved issues and questions I wish I could talk to him about and ask why things were the way they were. But I know I won’t ever get the clarity that I need. So instead of living and wondering why things ended the way they did. Instead of beating myself up for not asking enough questions and for not trying to have a better relationship with my father. Instead, I simply choose to live intentionally.
I choose to live my life knowing that I will be the one to break these generational curses that have plagued my family. I can’t change anything in the past but I can change where I am right now and I can change my future. Alcohol abuse, drug abuse, child abuse (both verbal and physical), and parentification will not affect my family.
My children will grow up and enjoy their childhood. They will live without chains holding them back. They will not grow up with a disadvantage at life. Instead, they will grow starting with an advantage. They will grow with love, encouragement, hope, passion, wisdom, and faith.
My father wasn’t perfect, but none of us are. And I am certainly not perfect. I am a lot of things, just like my father was, but one thing that I’m not is a quitter. I will not give up until my family has broken free from everything that has held us back. Generations of curses holding us back, but we will keep moving and pushing forward.
I’d like to leave you with one of my favorite quotes from a great poet Anne Sexton, "It doesn’t matter who my father was; it matters who I remember he was." My father was a lot of things, but he loved me and my siblings and I’ll remember that and pass that to my children. I love you dad.