It’s been a while since I have written you one of these. The occasion of Father’s Day, seems like a good time for another letter.
This is my 13th Father’s Day without you. Every year I honor you on this day, by remembering some of my favorite memories with you, like one of our family trips to Las Vegas or one of those times you would pick me up at the airport in Frankfurt and we would have a couple of hours in the car together, updating each other on recent events, before we would arrive home.
This year’s Father’s Day seems harder for some reason. I have been really missing you lately. I keep imagining a conversation with you. There’s so much to catch you up on! And maybe that’s why this year is harder; a lot of transitions and a lot of celebrations that leave me wishing you were still here with us.
Sacha is turning 18 in a couple of months. 18! Can you believe it? Remember how he would happily sit in your lap for hours on the balcony and look out at the trees, while you softly spoke to him? Remember how much he loved cars? He still does! He would rather talk about cars then anything else. You’d be so proud of him. He has grown into a kind and generous young man. Shayan is 16 and will also have his driver’s license soon. I’m still getting used to them having their own cars and driving away from me….. Letting go is hard. You would enjoy Shayan’s sense of humor. He is so smart and witty and he makes me laugh all the time. They both do, actually. They both love their school and have some great friends.
Whenever people talk about how difficult teenagers can be, I always say that I feel lucky to have mine. They are both really good kids! Other than some minor “teenage” behaviors, we have been spared so far (knock on wood). I still worry about them though. Neither one of them seems to really be clear about what they want to do in the future. They have lots of different interests. They both want to go to college (at least that’s what they say), but neither knows what they want to study. So I worry. Will they figure it out? Will they thrive? I hear you in my head, saying: “Give them time. Trust them and support them and that they will figure it out. You didn’t know what you wanted at that age either.” Thank you for the reminder. Patrick and I try to find a balance between encouraging them in the right direction without being too pushy, careful not to get in the way of their dreams and passions.
One of my biggest heartaches in my life is the fact that you did not get to meet Patrick. I sometimes imagine you here, at our house, hanging out in the back yard, enjoying the view (you would have LOVED our view!), having a cup of tea while Patrick is just quietly sitting next to you, enjoying the view with you, both of you with smiles on your faces, absolutely no words necessary between the two of you…. I love that image. He is so kind and so gentle, you would have loved to have seen, how well he takes care of us. I like to pretend that you know. I like to pretend you are somewhere, watching over us and that you know my heart isn’t broken anymore and that I have found the love you always knew I deserved.
I miss you so much! There’s so much I want to tell you about. I guess I inherited your story telling gene after all. I started this blog and I’m enjoying writing so much. Last year, I was finally able to write down the story of how we left Iran. It’s not complete and I’m not sure what I’m going to do with it yet, but at least I have a start. I came to realize a while back that I am the last person in our family that remembers the events that lead up to our departure from Iran. That realization held the responsibility of needing to pass the story on to the next generation. Sacha asked if he could read what I wrote. Unprompted, he began reading it out loud, right in front of me. I cried the whole time….
And Dad, oh my gosh, you won’t believe it: Donald Trump is president!! Just now, I heard you laughing in my head. I wish I could laugh with you. I remember how much you loved conspiracy theories. I think I inherited that gene too. Dad, this guy is so corrupt and such a showman, it is so hard to keep up with all the lies and all of his deals. You always taught me to look at every political issue from all angles and to keep the history in mind and to always follow the money! Every time Trump does or says something crazy, I have the impulse to call you and ask, what you think might be going on, or what you think his next move might be. We used to do that with Bush Sr. and Clinton, remember? I thought then, the Clinton scandals were crazy and you would just chuckle. You had seen and experienced more than I had and you knew things could be a lot worse. Well they are. If you were here you’d say “The world of politics has always been dirty. The good guys are rare and they have a hard time surviving in the corruption. The drama is just there for distraction. You have to look past the smoke to see what is really going on.” We would have had so much fun following this Trump-Russia thing together.
I tell the boys about you. I tell them about your childhood and your love for movies. I tell them about your favorite foods and your love for animals. I tell them how you used to be good at motivating people and how you used to tell me I could do anything in the world if I put my mind to it. I grieve the fact that they didn’t have enough time with you. Grief over your passing has changed over the years. I still miss you terribly, that will never change. But the pain of the sorrow isn’t as sharp anymore. It’s more like a dull ache that’s always with me. But this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. I’m not sure if this makes any sense, but it feels like my heart had to expand and grow to make space for holding you and the ache of missing you. I still feel acutely aware of how short and precious life can be and do my best to live it to the fullest. I’m turning 46 next month. You were 46 when you found out you had cancer. I’m holding that too….
It’s my 13th Father’s Day without you. This day will forever be bitter sweet. I honor you by sharing your memory with my family. I am grateful for my time with you. I am grateful to be celebrating this day with my husband and honoring him as well. I hope to dream of you again soon, it’s been a while. I hope I make you proud. I miss you. I carry you in my heart.
Oh, I almost forgot: Germany won the World Cup in 2014! I watched every game and thought about you! Cross you fingers for 2018, or put in a good word up there with the soccer Gods. They do exist, right…?