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Dad – One year later

by Teresa MI Schaefer, PHD

A year ago, I lost my father.

As ridiculous as some euphemisms can be, this one rings true to me.

Yes, he died. He is dead. Cremated.

No, I cannot go look for him. There is no Lost and Found for missing fathers.

In his passing I can no longer experience Dad.

I have memories. And treasures.

I have pictures. And stories.

But I do not have My dad.

I cannot poke fun at his politics

or sit and watch the Eagles fly with him.

I cannot hug him, tease him, laugh with him.

My dad was a funny dad.

A center of the room dad.

A you weren’t going to not notice this dad -- kind of dad.

The silence of his death is impressive.

Since his loss, I have been navigating.

Not in search of my father – you know the denial that leads one to believe they might be the first, the first to find the dad they lost.

No, this navigating was of the creeks of grief,

the oceans of sorrow,

and miles of missing.

I understand the hardest part of this navigation is now behind me, though the miles of missing will go on forever.

One year ago, a friend of mine said, “The loss of a parent is a loss of great vastness”.

Indeed, it is.


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