Today started off just like any other morning. I put one foot in front of the other and I kept on moving forward. I do this everyday, usually never looking back but for some reason, I turned around.
I mentioned in my last post how I was growing more anxious and aware of my estranged relationship with my father and it began to weigh heavily on me in the past few weeks. After all, it has been just about 6 years since I have last seen him. All ties were cut, no lines of communication. There have been hints dropped to me in the past few years by others that his health was not the best for such a young man, but I never listened. My angry self just blew it off and kept on with my life, moving forward without him.
Since JC has started a summer program in my Dad's hometown, I have found myself driving by his house daily. Each day as I passed I would glance over to see if he was out and each day he wasn't.
I drove past this morning and caught a glimpse of an aged red headed man that I used to adore and call Dad. A man that I never though would let me down, but did. The same man that threw such hateful, angry words at me the last time we spoke. The man that I had been hoping to catch a glimpse of for weeks, but was unable to. There he was.
So I kept on driving to work until I got a 1/2 mile down the road and I had this overwhelming feeling to turn around. A feeling that is so unusual for me to have. I wanted to keep pushing on and driving forward, but I couldn't. I turned around. Something made me turn around.
When I pulled up in the drive way, he didn't know who sat behind the wheel. When I got out, his tears were pouring down his face. The pure joy that overcame that once angry face that I had last looked at was something that I never thought I would see.
The only thing I said as I walked up was "I saw you sitting on the porch, so I thought I would stop to say hi."
I have never been hugged so tightly in my life. I can still smell him (and his smokes) on me. All he kept saying was "I have been praying for this day." Then with each exclamation of such, he would just look at me and then hug me more.
Then he looked at me and my belly. The words "it is a girl" made him cry harder as he held and kissed my belly.
Not once did I cry, not once was I able to call him Dad, but there is something about watching a grown man, let alone your father, cry. My only response was to tell him that it was "OK "and my only hope is that he now has the peace I know he was looking for.
For that moment, turning around today gave me a bit of peace too.