It is one year since my Dad passed away. Has it really been an entire year? I still can’t fathom what took place on 4th of April 2015, when we lost a truly special and significant person. I think about him every day. How could I not? My whole life is what it is because of him.
The 4th of April feels like a replacement New Year’s. Right, the day is nearly done. Now we start over. Again. Another year of living without him ahead of us. One day at a time.
A year ago I posted the poem Starting Over. A year on and it feels appropriate to post it again.
Today we are assaulted by pain. Tomorrow, we try to pick ourselves up. Again. To start over and keep living.
And so we must begin to live again,
We of the damaged bodies
And assaulted minds
Starting from scratch with the rubble of our lives
And picking up the dust
Of dreams once dreamt.
And we stand there, half naked in our vulnerability,
Proud of starting over, fighting back,
But full of weak humility
At the awesomeness of the task.
We, without a future,
Safe, defined, delivered
Now salute you God.
Knowing that nothing is safe,
Secure, inviolable here.
And even that eludes our minds at times.
And we hate you
As we love you,
And our anger is as strong
As our pain,
Our grief is as deep as oceans,
And our need as great as mountains.
So, as we take our first few steps forward
Into the abyss of the future,
We would pray for
Courage to go places for the first time
And just be there.
Courage to become what we have
Not been before
And accept it,
And bravery to look deep
Within our souls to find
We did not want it easy God,
But we did not contemplate
That it would be quite this hard,
This long, this lonely.
So, if we are to be turned inside out,
And upside down,
With even our pockets shaken,
Just to check what’s rattling
And left behind,
We pray that you will keep faith with us,
And we with you,
Holding our hands as we weep,
Giving us strength to continue,
And showing us beacons
Along the way
To becoming new.
We are not fighting you God,
Even if it feels like it,
But we need your help and company,
As we struggle on
And starting over.
Anna McKenzie in ‘Good Friday People’