For the longest time, losing my father had been my greatest fear. The first full length novel I wrote (still unpublished) was an attempt to come to terms with facing that fear. And a relatively recent novel that I wrote explored my desire to explore "what if he hadn't died." I doubt I'll ever stop including this element in some way in my writing.
Yesterday, when I was talking with my son about the grandfather that he never had the chance to meet, he asked about the surgery and if I ever wished I could find a time machine so I could go back and change what happened on that day. One of the things I love most about hanging out with my ten year old is that our minds are so alike; we can get into a grove and the decades of age difference between us dissolve.
It's always an interesting premise, wanting to go back and change things that didn't go right.
But there are a few things that went right that fateful morning. Such as giving my father a hug and a kiss and telling him that I loved him before he headed off into surgery.
|Dad and I in Levack, sharing a beer and some laughs back in the 90's|
Tonight, when I'm sitting back and having a beer, I'll be toasting the memory of my father; I'll be toasting all the fun times that we shared, all those moments together, and the life that he lived; celebrating a man I continue to try to emulate. But I'll also be celebrating the incredible gift that I have in being a father to such a truly wonderful son as I continue to marvel at all he is and continues to grow to become.
|Alexander and a game of chess we played last night (while philosophizing) at The Winking Judge|
Tonight, I'll be toasting to memories, and to futures; and reflecting on just how blessed I am that I get to live between the two extraordinary lives of my father and my son. The influence of both of them make me into a better person.