February 19, 2013 § 4 Comments
This is from a writing assignment O did while attending NYU — way back in the early 90′s. We had to write a letter as if it were to a member of our family who had passed away. The other part of the assignment was to write it from the prospective of your gender opposite — so, i had to write it as if I were a girl.
We had to read this to the class. Mine was well received. I later presented this during a reading I gave on grief. Now, I want to share it with you.
KEEP IN MIND, THIS PIECE IS STRICTLY FICTION.
10 years ago, last month you died. I was only 14 years old, yet upon your death, I was overcome with a flood of guilt. The fork in the road of our lives was brought before us when I was only a month old. You and Rick took one path… mom and I the other. Throughout my life, I held a grudge against the father that I had thought didn’t want anything to do with me. The man who I thought never wanted a daughter, who only wanted his son. The man who had hurt my mother and made her unhappy.
I held a grudge against a man… that never really existed. At your funeral, your friends all told me that not a day went by when you didn’t speak of me. That even though we had only seen each other twice (that i can remember) in 14 years, you really saw me much more than that, only… in the form of dreams, thoughts, concern, and pride as opposed to face to face. I guess I just wanted to say.. I’m sorry I never let go of that grudge… I’m sorry I have never spoken to you about it before, not even when I spoke to you that day two days before you died… If only I had known that we wouldn’t have the rest of our lives to work it out… If only I had known that it was going to be too late by the time I finally grew up and realized that nothing is one sided.. and nothing is ever as it seems.
I am turning 25 in June, as you know. I am doing well, at a job doing what I’ve always wanted to do. I am with a wonderful guy who I love, and who may very well love me even more. You have a beautiful 6 year old grandaughter who is intelligent, compassionate, and nurturing. I’m sure you’ve seen her. She was born 3 and a half months early. I’m sure you’ve seen her. The one that weighed 2 pounds, 2 ounces? remember? you should. I’m sure you’re one of her guardians up in heaven who helped her pull through that rough and delicate time.
I hope you have forgiven me up there, and I hope you’re watching over all of us always. And by the way dad, Angelina’s soccer games are on Saturday mornings… just in case you ever want to watch.
I Love You!