God has created my heart only for Himself. He asks me to give it to Him that He may make it happy." -St. John Vianney
Today marks the anniversary of the death of my father, John. He died April 15, 2003. It is especially poignant for me to remember him this morning. I was the last person to speak to him on the telephone and I was the one who found his body.
I will be forever grateful that the last thing I said to my father was, "I love you.".
Today of all days, I think it is time for me to come clean and clear the air. I have deeply upset someone in my family. I did this by stating on this blog that I know longer cared about their life, which was not true. In fact what I wrote was a lie. I can tell you, and it would be true, that I badly worded the subjective truth and should not have written it in that manner. It doesn't matter, however, because when they read it they saw just the words and it hurt them. They have justly removed themselves from my life and I cannot blame them. I can only apologize in the same forum in which I caused them pain and I choose to do so on the anniversary of my father's death because I do not want the day to begin without telling them I love them, just as I did not let the night of April 14th end without saying I love you to my father.
The reality of what I wrote would have been better explained as this: I care deeply that they have a wonderful and full life, that God enrich them with grace and happiness and that they and their siblings go on into the world and find success.
My personal happiness is no longer linked to their approval but I would never deliberately hurt them either in person or in print. I would love to be a part of their life and I accept that I am not. I hope they will forgive me one day.
My father, John, was a WWII combat vet, a thrice married man who loved to hunt and fish and adored his three grandchildren. His relationship with his own children was rocky. John was not always easy to live with - he had a volitale temper, was quick to lash out at people and could be quite hurtful.
At the same time he and I shared a love of history and animals. The movie The Thing (the original Howard Hawks version, not the newer one with Kurt Russel) was one of our favorites to watch and any time I see it come on the television I think of him.
Today, estranged as I am from someone I love, I think of my father and how he too was estranged from people he loved at the end of his life. I am not sure if he ever attempted to reach out, to ask for forgiveness or to admit his wrongs. I know he did not do so with me but because of my 12 Step Program and The Church I chose to forgive him anyway. It was the right thing to do and I did it for me, not for him.
I hope today goes well for everyone who reads this blog - friend, foe or family. I will keep all of you in prayer and I hope you do the same for me.