Monday, October 5, 2009

Celebrating life

There are some of us who live our lives among the rest of you and seem to the naked eye to be as normal as the next person. In my case if you have a closer look, you'll see a scar. It's not there for all to see but it is ragged from a wound opening many times over the years. These days I'm happy to say it's getting silvery with age - the wound has not been torn open so much in recent years.

But the hurt has been deep. Penetrating. Breath-takingly deep.

Such is the hurt felt when you lose a loved one. In my case, my dad. 21 years ago today.

When I'm pregnant I think of him more frequently. Wonder what he would have been like as a grandfather. Would he like me as a parent? Would he melt into a thousand pieces in her presence like my mum does?

In 21 years you'd think I'd have let all the hurt go and just think of him fondly. Today I think I can say that I'm getting there. Real close. While driving a couple of weeks ago I thought of dad and then heard this clear, peaceful, strong voice in my head say "You need to let him go. It's ok that he's not here". I don't hear this voice often - but when I do I know it's not my thoughts. It's something so much more. And then something happened while driving through the Mooroolbark 5 ways round-a-bout. I gave in. I took a deep breath, shed a silent tear...and felt my body relax with relief.

Turns out I have been holding on so tightly to him that I never let myself feel his loss and move through it. In holding on I hadn't let go of the pain either...but I think it's time. He's not here and I'm ok. I have a beautiful life that needs every part of me present to enjoy it. It's time to let go and live in the moment, not the past, or in fear of the future and what loss may be ahead for me. There is so much to look forward to.

So today I choose to celebrate the life of one Peter Christensen. Thank you for being my loving, perfectionist, creative, compassionate, flawed, father. I am like you in so many ways and choose to carry your life, and not your death, with me from now on. Because your life is worth celebrating, and so is mine. x


Jo said...

beautifully written my friend ~ brought a tear to my eye, and gladness to my heart, you have so much to live for, your Dad would be so proud of you. Jo x

Clare said...

Beautiful Julia. Tears here too. Sounds like you're definitely your fathers daughter! xx Clare

two little buttons said...

oh, you bought a tear to my eye. what a beautiful post, full of emotion. thanks for sharing. your dad would be proud of all you are and all that you will be.

Anonymous said...

Julia, my amazing, beautiful daughter. I have just loved reading your 30 days of gratitude, waiting expectently each day for your next post. Having read your last entry on the anniversary of losing our much loved husband and father, tears came instantly, not only for the sadness of your loss but the honesty and beauty of your writings. I feel I know you so well
but realise you keep some thoughts close to your heart which is ok...thank you for sharing your most heartfelt, personal feelings and acknowledgement of your unique Dad whose influence and life lessons he taught you have contributed to who you are today -
a much loved compassionate,creative, loving, perfectionist, daughter of June and Peter....what a blessing you are. xxxMumxxx

Alisa said...

Thank goodness I read this in the comfort of my own home.. Im full of tears, tears filled with love peace for you, our dad, and for what our family have become from loosing a man that I'm proud to say was/is my Dad. I read your thoughts with a light heart knowing that you have chosen to live life in celebration of Dads life and what he brought to ours... thats all he would ever ask of you!

Beautiful sister - Please know that Dad could not have asked or wished for a more amazing daughter than what you are. You would and still do no doubt blow him away in all your achievments as a wife, mother, sister, friend etc...

Thank you for sharing your inner thoughts and feelings to us - you are such a gentle loving soul Im blessed to be able to call - my sister!

I love you beyond xox

Anonymous said...

Oh, Julia. I'm finding it hard to even write this. I too lost my dad at an early age (him too young) so I know EXACTLY how you feel. I too felt it when I had my own children and now my grandchildren.
One of the best things I did was to write him a letter saying goodbye (because I didnt have the chance to do that at the time).
Every now and then I feel him close and often talk to him. After 36 years I still miss him. Embrace your love for him and hold it in your heart because while you still remember him, he is still with you.

Gill (Jo's mum)

Nikki Cardigan said...

Julia, I feel lucky to have come across your blog right now, to have been able to read your post about you and your father. What you have written is so obviously personal and from somewhere deep inside your soul, but this was made clearer by the comments from your Mum and Sister. It seems there are several similar scars left by your dad, scars that may become less ragged by the honesty you have written here.

Michelle M said...

Just catching up on my reading, so I'm a little late but I wanted to thank you for this. I lost my mum 6mths ago and the pain is so huge I am too frightened to confront it. Reading your thoughts gives me hope. It also means alot to me that after 21 years you still have such strong feelings about your Dad - I can't ever imagine not feeling this sadness about losing my mum so young and I have been worried about how she will continue to be a part of my life long into the future.

So beautifully written... thank you for sharing.

m.e (Cathie) said...

Julia thank you so very much for stopping by & letting me know that you understand.
Thanks for leading me to this beautiful post that you have written about an extremely vital person who helped make who you are.
I haven't stopped crying since I read your post and your mum's & sister's comments.
thanks for opening your heart & sharing this, it really is hard to let others see this part of ourselves, but it does help a little in the grieving.
thanks ♥