I want to tell you that my daddy turned 81 this week, that I made him a German chocolate cake, treated him to a big buffet lunch and gave him a beautiful card. But that would be misleading.
The truth is, he would have turned 81 – the same age Mom was at death – if he’d lived 14 years longer. My daddy died in 2006 at age 67.
I’ve read plenty of stories about children reaching the age a parent was at death. Outliving that marker. Meaning drips from the milestone. I’m not there, yet this birthday haunted me.
He could have lived this long, I thought to myself. He could have been 81. He could still be here. With me. With us.
Why do we do this to ourselves?