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I heard a new, well...new to me, song a few days ago called Even Though I’m Leaving I Ain’t Going Nowhere. It tells the story of a father and son, throughout their lives, in three basic acts. In the first act, the son is a young boy, asking his father not to go back to his own room because there are monsters in his room and he needs his father’s protection. Of course it ends with the father telling the son that even when he’s not here, he’ll be “there”. Hence, the title of the song. In the second act, the son has joined the military and is about to ship out when he realizes he needs his father. Again, the father reassures him he’ll always be “there”. Then, in the third and final act, we find the son at his father’s bedside, realizing the father is almost gone and then realizing he will be all alone and can’t do it on his own. One last time, the father reassures the son that he’ll always be “there”.
I know, I know, it’s a bit formulaic and predictable but it’s a formula that has always drawn me in. Initially because of my relationship with my father and now because of the relationship with my sons and our rapidly changing realities. And it seems anymore that this touchy feely stuff just sends me right on over the top. I tear up, I get nostalgic, and I so anticipate the future. And I sincerely hope I’ve shown them that I truly will always be “there”.
I assume, that to many of you, this is a feel good, fluff post that serves no real purpose. But to me it is so much more. As my speaking abilities have diminished it has become more difficult to convey my feelings to my family adequately. To that end I have tried to do so through my writing. The little missive you are currently reading is my best effort to continue this mission. And to let my entire family know that, no matter what, when they need me, I’ll be “there”.