Sunday, August 1, 2021

Inconvenient (On My Father's 4th Yortzeit)

 Dear Dad,

As your 4th Yortzeit approaches tonight, the word that comes to mind is inconvenient.  Nothing about your passing has been convenient or comfortable for me - that I'll acknowledge - but let's review for a moment what these last few years have been.  That first year, your death thrust me into a year of aveilut and a whirlwind of Kaddish that interrupted nearly every facet of life (including all my dates with Saleh).  Your second Yortzeit fell on my birthday/Maggie's naming party and the third was in the middle of a global pandemic.  And this year... I'm waiting to go into labor any time now - I don't know if I'll be in shul tonight to say Kaddish or at the hospital meeting your new grandchild.  Inconvenient is an understatement!  I've made all the plans within my power... and now the decisions are up to Baby and Hashem - as they always were.  I guess one important lesson from these last 4 years is about how many things are outside of my control, whether I like it or not! 

On the other hand, the last few years have also been filled with blessings - Meeting Saleh, Marc's and my weddings, the birth of your 2 (almost 3 grandchildren) and more.  Would that you could have been here for all of them... For example - I wish you could have heard me speak at Seudah Shlishit at the end of that first year... I could have chosen any topic - it didn't need to be about missing you!  And on your second Yortzeit, wouldn't you have rather held Maggie in your arms than had her named for you?  And the pandemic... well - I can't really lay that one at your feet, but I imagine that you and Uncle Paul could have figured something out if you'd put your heads together... maybe you're working together on a solution even now so that we can celebrate your new grandchildren properly - safely surrounded by loving family and friends!

Bottom line is... I'm still missing you - especially now that I'm on the verge of (finally) becoming a parent myself.  I can't believe it's been 4 years... and what years they have been...!  I'm not mad anymore (at least not right now) and I recognize that missing you won't really go away, but gosh it's inconvenient.  

Thinking of you with love...

All of us 

In loving memory of Maury Joseph Fechter - Mordechai Yosef ben Shmuel (24th Av)

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I am an educator who is trained to reflect, not a rabbi or any type of halachic authority. These writings are in no way binding, and may not represent all approaches to and experiences in navigating grief. In fact, there will likely be those who disagree with me or can offer additional suggestions and reflections. For this reason, I am leaving the comments section open so that together as a community, we can broaden the scope of this blog to include a majority of human experience.

One important request: Please be respectful in posting your comments and be sure to frame your tips in the most positive phrasing possible. I reserve the right to delete any unkind comments and plan to update the original posts occasionally to include additional insights and reflections from our combined experience.

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