Saturday, May 29, 2010

Need Fulfillment

I awaken this morning in the home of my son - a home located a couple of thousand miles or so from the one where he grew up. The one where his Mom and me still hang our hats. I suppose that to the outside observer this is the dictionary definition of "a little thing". While that may be true, I would submit that life is not a "big thing" but is - instead - a patchwork quilt composed and comprised of all of the little things; none of which stands alone.

Monday morning Rob and I will head a bit south and west from where he lives to a town where I spent four fun-filled years of my life when I was much younger than I am now. Hell, it was so long ago that I was younger then than Rob is now. It was so long ago that it was an era of my life that began and ended prior to my first meeting Margaret or Suzanne or Rob. In many respects it was a lifetime ago.

Monday morning marks the 29th anniversary since my father died. Dad died in his sleep at the house that he/Mom had built out beyond nowhere's jurisdictional limits in Neshanic Station. That year, like this year, Memorial Day fell on its latest possible date: the 31st of May. While Memorial Day is affixed a location on the calendar (last Monday in May) in a manner akin to Thanksgiving or Easter, it does not fall on the same date annually the way in which Christmas does or New Year's Day does. Because the memory in my mind's eye of Memorial Day weekend twenty-nine years ago is not a great one, irrespective of what day on the calendar on which it falls, Memorial Day is a day that never fails to trick up my heart rate just a tick or ten.

I am at a place in my life now as a father where I know - as a son - my father never was with me and (if I had to work off of my memory only) where I do not think he ever was with either of my older brothers. I am a guest in the home of my adult son, spending a few days with him during which other than run for a little while on Monday morning we have an agenda-free weekend. There is no great occasion that brings me West. There is merely Rob. More than enough by any estimation.

Life being the journey that it is and not the destination that sadly sometimes some of us believe it to be, you cannot get to where you are at any particular point in time without being comprised of - at least in part - the experiences you have lived and have lived through to get there. This morning. This particular point in time. Today I am where I am and with who I am with in part because of what happened twenty-nine years ago, Monday, on Wertsville Road.

But I am who I am and I have lived the life I have lived in the manner in which I have lived it more because of me than because of anyone or anything else. Hopefully wherever you are this morning, wherever this particular point in time finds you on your journey you feel similarly. People may help make us but we cannot afford to allow them to break us. If you’re loved by someone, you’re never rejected. Decide what to be and go be it.

It turns out John Lennon was right. I suppose had I simply asked Bill whether he was or not, he could have answered that question for me definitively years ago.

Then again, I reckon that some questions simply need to be answered firsthand. And this would be one of them.


1 comment:

Tara and Jerry said...

that is a terrific essay on the anniversary of your dad's passing. enjoy each and every moment of your weekend with your son.