Tuesday, November 26, 2013

The Time Is Now...

Today is my father's birthday. It's been over 10 years since he passed away but my siblings and I still acknowledge, and in some way, celebrate the day our father was born. When he was alive, he would not let us forget it. He would call us days before, telling us what we better have for him he wanted and he made sure to show up and collect. In some ways, I felt like, 'he got some damn nerve!' but, for the most part, I took joy in showing my Dad some love on his special day. He was nowhere near a perfect father but he loved him some me and I loved me some him.. We shared a close bond and had a good relationship. I was a 'Daddy's Girl' for most of my life, but things changed as I got older. 

In the weeks before my father died, I was giving him the cold shoulder. If he said anything to me, my responses would be short & snippy, I kept my distance and my smiles for him were tight-lipped, if I smiled his way at all. During this time, I was ready to confront him and go head-to-head with the 'Why didn't you/where were you when...' conversation. I had asked him a few hard questions before, but it was never an opportunity where we could have a full-blown discussion. I was so ready for it, and I could tell, in his eyes, he wasn't. I believe he had an idea of how I I felt because he seemed to be extra soft & cautious in our interactions. He wouldn't say too much about my attitude and actions towards him but he would give me this look. A look that said, 'You better watch who you're talking to' but 'I understand where you're coming from' at the same time. For the most part, I never gave my father any backtalk (because I knew I would get a backhand and a fat lip), but at this particular time, I didn't care. I was (as they say today) in my feelings. I felt hurt so I wanted him to hurt too. 

Then, one night, my father was hit and run over by a car....and he died from the injuries 10 days later. He was in tremendous pain in the days leading up to his death and I felt no sympathy. It was one of the few times in my life that I felt cold & indifferent towards someone I loved. I was mad so, at the time, I thought, 'that's what he gets' (the pain, not the incident). Not once did I think he would die (from those circumstances) and never did I wish death upon him. I just didn't care that he was suffering and I chalked it up to him getting his karma. Then, he was gone.  

As I saw my father lying lifeless on my sister's couch, all the things I felt the need to say to him before didn't seem to matter much. In the subsequent days of planning his funeral, I had time to think, reflect and reminisce. I thought about how unnecessary and unfair my recent actions toward my father were. How, instead of being funky and cold towards him, I could have used a more loving, warm approach. Instead of judging my father on the things I thought he did wrong, I could have focused on all of the things he did right. I could have looked at him as the flawed human being he was (as we all are); a person who made choices that resulted in some good and some bad. I could see the hurt in my Dad's eyes from the disappointment he knew I felt. Yes, I had some resentment but our good times greatly outweighed the bad times. I should have reassured my Daddy how much I loved him, and that I was still his girl, in spite of it all....

No matter how much anger, resentment or disappointment you feel, if you love someone, need someone or want someone in your life, let them know.....now....before it's too late.

Don't wait until it's too late.....
if you love me, tell me now
if you care, show me how much 
I really mean to you

Don't wait until it's too late....

if there's something you want me to have, give it to me today
if there's something I need to know, don't hesitate 
say what's on your mind

Don't wait until it's too late...
if the time comes, take it
when the chance arrives, embrace it
and make 

Don't wait until it's too late...

when my eyes can no longer see
and my ears can no longer hear 
when my feelings can no longer be

Don't wait until it's too late

when my body has gone cold
and your words and actions can do me no good
and all I am is a memory to hold

Don't wait 
another day might be too late....

the time 
is now

copyright 2013 by Sameialika Tarver

Happy Birthday Daddy