This birthday is my first without Daddy.
And so this post today, because I want these words out of my head and heart, before they overwhelm me.
Dad & I have birthdays immediately following each other (the 25th & 26th.)
All my birthday memories are inextricably linked with him.
Him being indulgent with his firstborn.
Him holding me close and sharing his cake with me as I grew.
Him taking care of me and letting me crawl into his lap to say our prayers on cold mornings in our small drafty house.
Him being patient with me during my crazy headed years.
And always waiting for me, for our shared birthday cake.
Me loving the fact that I could share my cake with him as I grew.
That I could take care of him, like he did me.
That I was a sterner dad to him, than he ever was to me.
And now for the first time, in 40 years, I do not have a hand holding mine and I feel utterly bereft.
While the Bible and the Stoics remind me that dust indeed I am, I’ll forever be indebted to God, that my father was my rock.