On the day before Father’s Day, I stood on top of one of the Rocky mountains, and I thought about my dad, who loved the Rockies, and who would have loved to have stood atop one. And I thought, too, about how so many of my experiences are colored by his absence, by his total absence, by the impossibility of his presence, which is what death is, really. The cessation of possibility. My husband was also absent from that mountain, as was my son, and my mother, and my sister, and everyone else that I love in life, but it wasn’t their absence that distracted me, and made my heart ache. There’s always the possibility that I will stand atop a mountain with my husband, my son, my mom – it is within my power, in fact, to make real this possibility – but there is no such possibility with my dad. All possibility is gone. We will climb no mountains together.
And that’s okay. Mostly. It does make my heart ache, as I said. And it does color Father’s Day, every year. But it also reminds me to make the most of the possibilities that I still have with everyone that I love who is here. It reminded me, this weekend, on that mountain, that that moment with Emilia was special in ways that she’ll probably not appreciate for years and years and years, and that it was all the more special, to me, for that. She and I stood atop a mountain, and in that moment, the world was all about possibility, and we will always, always have that. I’ll always have that.
Thank you, Dad, for reminding me. Happy Father’s Day.