Sunday, June 15, 2014

Father's Day

I called my dad today for Father's Day for the first time since January. It's so wonderful to be able to not talk to him for long periods of time, and then see how much I've changed each iteration.

Today, I noticed our dance, showing parts of ourselves, hinting at pain, but never fully saying "I am hurting" without quickly running away. I only tell him of what I'm doing. He tells me of his deteriorating health, of his job fears, the terror I have heard a thousand times spoken as if it's new today. "Honestly, I feel like I'm living day by day" he says, as if it is a confession to a crime he's forgotten he's plead guilty to all his life. I can feel myself want to reach out to him and touch that painful core in the inverted shape of my own. Yet I stop myself from reaching and having my hand bitten for the thousandth time, knowing from experience how this game will be played.

Even as I can handle present-day him so much easier than ever before, his memory is still terrifying. I was walking today on the greenway, and a train came barreling on the tracks alongside it. It screamed, hurtling towards me with a raucous immensity that carried a familiar inevitability which made me clutch myself as much to hide as to protect myself.

I'm glad it felt like him. I'm glad I can feel it. I'm glad I can get trigged, can feel fear coursing through me, can be overwhelmed and cover myself in the terror I didn't let my child self feel. I can let the feeling wash over me, through me. I can feel it and be hurt by it. And I can survive it.

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