Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Just Missing Dad

And the Watch More Movies initiative continued with going to see True Grit in the theatre this past weekend.  I was really looking forward to seeing this, it's getting great reviews and several friends saw it and loved it. 
The original, which I've never seen, was one of my father's favorite movies.  When I was in my early twenties and had just moved to Florida by myself and was trying to make a life here, he wrote me a letter and said that he was proud of me and that I had "true grit".  And yet I never watched the movie.
I know without any doubt that my Dad loved me, and I know that he knew I loved him.  With the spectre of sudden tragedy never out of my fearful neurotic mind, I really try hard to tell people that I love them, and to spend time with them; I don't want to have any regrets.  But what I didn't know would pluck at my tender heart are the missed opportunities, the things that seem so clearly vital now but didn't even occur to me at the time. 
Why didn't I watch the movie and talk to him about what he loved about it?  Better yet, why didn't I think to sit down and watch it with him during a visit?  I try not to beat myself up for things like that, I can't go back in time and change how my head worked and plant the idea, but it hurts to imagine what a wonderful thing it would have been.  It really, really hurts.
So I sat in the theatre and watched the movie and wondered what Dad would have thought of this new version.  I liked the movie very much, and when it was over Greg and I stayed to read the credits, like we always do.
And all of a sudden I just started sobbing.  I was aware of being kind of sad, but honestly I had no idea that tears were coming.  Greg held me and I cried for a couple of minutes.
A few days ago a friend's father died.  In tribute to him, she got a tattoo, and posted photos of it on her Facebook page.  My sad heart hurts for her.  Last week my co-worker's father passed away, tonight I'll go to the service at the funeral home.  My heart cries for her, too.  It's just too much sadness.
Here's a favorite picture of me and my sweet Daddy: