I have avoided writing about that day like the plague. I would like to think that in the year that has passed, I have mourned my father silently. People who are very close to me have handled that topic with a certain kind of delicateness and to be honest, I am yet to decide whether I should be thankful for the sensitivity or scornful that I am treated with so much vulnerability.
I cannot blame them though. Each time the topic of my father’s passing comes to mind, I am confronted with my inadequacies, every single one of which slapped across my face on that day — my disobedience as a daughter, my insufficiency as a sister, my lack of self-awareness. And I say these not to demean my person; my father had taught me long and good to never do that. I say these as a matter of fact because on the day he passed, I was all these.
There should be some sort of progress though. It has been a year. There has to be some form or semblance of forgiveness, for the instance, for the misfortune, for the people. But I will not act as if I’ve reached that level of self-actualization. Today, even after a year, I am still unforgiving.
But is that something bad though? I don’t think so. And I’ve said this a little too often, these things never get easier. Every day is still hard. Every day we are still fatherless. Every day we are still lacking. Every day we walk the floors and the walls of avenues and still have that nagging feeling of never being whole again. These things never get easier. You just get used to it.
I still sleep with the lights on. In France, there was an attempt to be in the dark again, but it pulled me deeper than it should have. The darkness never used to scare me, but now it does. I wish I can say I’ll be over it soon, but I can’t. I miss my father and in the dark, I am reminded of how little I gave to him on the days building up to his passing.
And that is one demon I can’t seem to outrun.
There will be no father-daughter dance at my wedding, and I will be attending so many more unions with the bride crying silently on her dad’s shoulder as he slowly lets her go. I will never be able to reconcile with that fact. But I will try. That’s the best we can all do anyway.