As Time Goes On: Lessons From Grief

The seasons are changing. As the leaves turn color and the air grows crisp, I find myself thinking about my dad. He’s been gone for five years, but it’s the little things I miss the most. The sound of his voice; the way he smiled. Fall also means football and Halloween, and as I watch kids trick-or-treat with their dads, I am reminded of mine.

I am 20 years old, but that doesn’t mean a thing as far as the emotions I feel when thinking about my dad. I will still cry; I will reminiscence and become sad at what may seem like the most trivial of things. Nobody told me how to deal with losing my dad at 15, so I just never dealt with it and tried to act like it almost never happened. The world keeps spinning, and it seems as if one can ill-afford to pause and grieve. Everyone always asks me “How are you?” I pause, and for a split moment, I consider telling them the truth. I am sad; I miss my dad. But no, the answer to that question is always, “Good,” because I doubt anyone wants the truth, especially strangers.

I’ve learned over the years that it’s OK not to be OK, and that some days will be better than others when it comes to grief. Grief is the price we all must pay to love, and I am learning that as time goes on. Had I never loved, had I never had my dad in my life, I would never feel this sadness. I realize that now, and I am grateful for the tears, as they remind me of the time I loved someone who never ceased to love me.

And so as the seasons change, and as time goes on, I will always remember the man I called my dad.

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