Sunday, June 16, 2013

Life's Empty Spaces

Today was a good day, all in all. Most days now are good days. My daughter had a friend stay over last night, but she had to leave early this morning. It was Father's Day, after all, and the family had plans.

The kids seemed fine all day. They played with each other and the kittens, and were in good spirits. I kept opening up Facebook and then closing it down again, as it was an endless stream of tributes to fathers around the world. 

This evening a friend posted a link to a series of photos of abandoned places. When I looked at the pictures, which were beautiful, I felt a wave of sadness come over me, and I realized it was the sadness I had kept at bay all day. 

I thought I could keep it neatly tucked away. But life has a way of handing back to us, through metaphor, those things we try quietly to push under the rug. 

So I decided instead to look at the photos and feel my sadness, and let it pass naturally.

Tonight I am thinking of all those who are fatherless, whether by accident or design. I'm thinking of my sister-in-law, who lost her father in August, and my dear friend, who long ago lost her father to suicide. I'm thinking of the many women who have written me with stories of childhood sexual violence or abandonment. I'm thinking of those who were disregarded, dismissed, unseen. I'm thinking of my own father, gone now eleven years (rest in peace, Papa). And of course, I'm thinking of my beautiful, resilient children, and wishing them so much love.

If you have felt sadness today, I am wishing you peace and healing.

Remember, life is a persistent force. It continues to flourish, even in those spaces abandoned by others.

















15 comments:

  1. Beauty in sadness and abandonment. Life never ceases to amaze, does it? You, Kristin, are also a persistent force that will continue to flourish

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    1. Thanks for your beautiful comment, Sharon (and for bringing the photos to my attention in the first place). The intersection of beauty and darkness continues to surprise me. x

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  2. Somehow, this did calm me. Thank you.
    Mourning what you have lost takes longer than we expect.

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    1. It comes and goes, doesn't it, often finding us when we least expect it? x

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  3. I lost my father just over 7 years ago. I was about 6 weeks pregnant with my first child, and it was just one month until my wedding. It was a tough time - there I was, with 2 major positive life events on the horizon, and then my Dad died. 'Bittersweet' does not really describe that time, but the contradiction is apt.

    I was thinking about you and your kids yesterday, wishing you all strength and perspective. Some sweet with the bitter; some joy with the sadness.

    Hugs to you, my amazing friend.

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    1. Thank you, lovely. You know, I also lost my dad when I was pregnant with my first child. I married about a month before he passed away, but he was so deep in dementia at that point he didn't even know. In a sense, I mourned his lost him twice. First to dementia, then later to death. But isn't that a coincidence, that we shared a similar experience like that?

      Thanks for your kindness and support. I hope you are enjoying your new job. xo

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  4. Sending heaps of hugs your way. I have wondered how I will deal with Mother's Day and Father's Day when my parents are no longer here and I don't know how I will. I feel sad for A every year when we celebrate Father's Day with my Dad, knowing that his Dad is no longer here.
    Have a great week !
    Me

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    1. You know, I lost both my parents many years ago, and the holidays do offer me a chance to reflect on and celebrate the good memories, too.

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  5. Yesterday was not Father's Day in Aus, but it was as coincidence has it, my father's birthday. It took me all day to build the courage to call him to wish him a Happy Birthday. I feel bad sometimes that I dislike my father so much, especially when so many people have lost their beloved fathers from their lives. Families are so complicated. I am sorry you felt such sadness for what you children may have lost. However, they will always have your love and given your guidance will hopefully grow and develop gathering strength. In some ways, it is far better he is not there than be there and be a constant threat to you all. A fine line to tread I know and I send you healing light and love to give you strength. Cyber hugs as always xxxx

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    1. You know, I forget that Father's Day is different in Australia (though I think we celebrate Mother's Day on the same day). Family relationships can be very complicated, can't they? I remember hearing somewhere that losing a parent with whom you've had a difficult relationship is often harder than losing one you are close to, perhaps because of all the unresolved feelings. I'm sorry you've experienced so much difficulty with your own father. I wish everyone could have loving and nurturing parents.

      Thanks for your beautiful comments about my own situation. I think my kiddos will be okay, perhaps more than okay. I just grieve for what I cannot give them.

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  6. Much love to you all. That's all I have to say.

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  7. Thinking of you. These days can be so hard. x

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  8. Thank you for sharing. My own dad is not a person I feel deep love for. I empathized with him as a child because he was a human being and he was my dad but he was not a loving man. Hence when he died I felt no fatherly/daughterly love and my heart ached because I felt I never had a father. I craved older men and their attention (healthy attention of course)... I felt closer to my father in law and a few other men then I ever did to my own dad. It's painful stuff. Your post is beautiful!

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  9. Wow, what a sad yet beautiful post. Very moving. My thoughts are with you and your family.

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