You are the youngest daughter in your family. Your father is demanding that you tell him how much you love him. In your own words, tell him what you really feel about his question. What are you prepared to say in response to his demand?
The above is a suggested blog post for the Shakespeare and Renaissance Literature unit which I am doing at University. This struck a chord with me. My own father died some 10 years ago. It is his birthday this month. I was unable to be with him in the final days of his life. He asked for us not to go down to see him. We had said our face to face goodbyes about a month earlier. I rang every day. My dad was not one to say “I Love You” and did not expect his manly sons to say it either. It was just sort of understood. I could tell my mother, as could my brothers, but to show emotions in front of my father would have been seen as weakness by him.
So, now that I have done a mindfulness course; now that I am in touch with my emotions and stand unafraid to speak them. Here is a poem, that I would write for my father. Or if you like, one that Cornelia would have written to her father the King.
You held me when I was small
kept me safe from all
that scared me in the night
or gave me a fright.
You held my hand on the first day of school
you brushed my hair so I looked real cool
you put food on the table, a roof over my head
you shook my hand when you sent me to bed.
You carried me from the car, asleep
you taught me life lessons which I keep
you cheered while I took a bow on stage
at times you scolded me, “act you age”.
You gave everything that you could give
I prayed to God that you would live
It’s hard to write now as I shed a tear
we were never close but you were always near.
If I had the time to live over again
I would be there to share your pain
“I’m doing alright” you would lie
why did you have to go and die?
before I could tell you
I love you.
You see dad, its not the things you gave me that makes me love you. Its that you taught me to be a man.; to be responsible, to have my own opinion and not to follow the crowds. You taught me to be myself no matter what anyone else thinks. You made it safe for me to come out, when earlier in my life I was too afraid. When everyone else deserted me, you were there. That’s why I love you.
I miss you dad.