Before I leave for my trip to Iceland tomorrow; there are a few things I wanted to say out loud. Typically I just prefer to mask the truth; push it down deep into the cavernous parts of my soul, until it unfurls and catapults itself uncontrollably into the universe. Grief has been a struggle of mine for a really long time. And mostly, it’s because I made the choice to hold onto anger for too long. Long enough that by the time I came to grips with it; time had punished me with the loss of something, someone, huge. I have learned the hard way how regret can pierce your insides and rot things. It works slowly. For a while I didn’t even notice. And then suddenly, like a cold sweat you wake up to after a nightmare; I realized I missed my father to a point that was inconsolable. I miss the version of him I loved the most; when I was a child and every weekend was an adventure. The version of him that would take me fishing and blast horribly inappropriate music. The version that made me love poetry and science. The version that taught me fuck you and the world; I’m going to be strong and ultimately, do whatever I want. He hadn’t been that version for a long time but does that mean that he deserved my cold silence. I don’t know. And that’s the question that led me to Iceland.
And here is my naked truth:
Two weeks before my father died his wife called to tell me that he didn’t have much time left. She left a voicemail, which I ignored. She said he wanted to see my brother and I once last time. When I saw it was my father’s number, something instinctual set in. I knew something was wrong but I just left it sitting there in my inbox. I refused to listen to it. When she called two additional times; reality set in and I listened to her last message. He was dead. She called to tell me my father had died. And then I went on with my life. As if nothing ever happened. Until one evening when I was looking through old pictures and I remembered all the things. And I realized that I fucked up. Bad.
Everyone keeps asking me why Iceland? Why Iceland?
I am a believer that anything my soul feels, needs or requires can be fulfilled by the beauty that nature presents. And if I connect enough with the earth, stay long enough to admire the view, grasp the dirt in my hands, I can find him. I can find anyone that I am missing. Because in truth, they are all around us. My heart tells me where to go and I go. I don’t ask questions, I don’t over think the consequence. I felt instinctually that Belize had something for me, my Nana died, I went and found the most beautiful waterfall I have ever seen. I swam in its water. I immediately felt better.
I will rest my grief and my guilt somewhere beautiful in a place I have never been while standing beside my brother who, coincidentally, looks like a spitting image of my father.
He even laughs like him.
So what am I really trying to tell you here?
If you are angry, at anything or anyone, put it down. It’s not worth it. In the end, we are all dirt, sand and water. It doesn’t fucking matter. Let people make mistakes and don’t judge them harshly. If they hurt you terribly, just know, it just means they are broken. Their punishment is the world they live in. And that’s enough. Send them love. Use caution if you must. But don’t hold onto anything toxic.
Dad-I’ll see you in a couple days.