Today my son called to touch base. The phone conversation went on for more than an hour and half. I guess I have not spoken with him recently since I’ve had theses health issues. This is mostly my fault as I’ve been neglecting in checking on his progress. His mom has kept me in the loop but she knows my conversations with him get into great depth on many subjects but primarily our own recovery.

He gave me all his updates with regard to his job seeking opportunities, plans with roommate on moving out of Pathways for Peace sometime in the near term, his hopes and regrets. He finally got to the heart of his phone call. Was there anything else that he could do for me to make amends for the hurt he has given me? My emotions are worse than ever as I age and everything strikes a chord so easily but this reached deep into my heart. His voice was very serious and I could tell he had given his question a lot of thought. He was working the ninth step and his mom and I were of course on top of the list for making amends.

I needed to explain where and what he was to me at this moment. I wanted him to know that the idea of death surfaces more frequent than I care to think about. Maybe because of so many friends passing and the fact that I believe age has given me the realization of my own mortality. I have a fear of dying not so much for myself but for the hurt and sadness it gives those I love. I’ve seen most of my family pass and I know the hurt will pass but it will take time. I told my son that he needed to know that if I go to my grave this day, I’m okay with both my deceased son and himself. I cannot tell him how grateful am for the understanding he has shown and the wisdom in his young mind. There are no words that will sum up how much he has done for my healing. I don’t believe anyone could have broken through that barrier that separated my deceased son and myself. In doing so he has stayed strong. I think he got his strength from seeing that he was not only helping himself but more than that he was helping his father. The more he saw that I was gaining understanding the more he sought his own understanding. We were giving each other a reason to get better. What better reason could one have than to get better for the sake of someone who means the world to you?

He said he thought the answer might be as I said but he wanted to be sure there was nothing more that he could do for forgiveness. This of course brings me to my knees as I think back on the anger and pain I inflected on him and as well as the son I lost. This young man can pull at your heart strings so easily. I’m not a sentimental old man but I’ve shed more tears over things he has said to me about understanding and forgiveness. Maybe that’s why I inscribed those words above my heart? He cuts so deep into me that I cannot help myself but to tear up. It’s like he takes your whole life and puts it into a simple misunderstanding of caring and real love between a father and son. I have so much to learn but each day with him still here I have a place to go for peace. I am okay. I wish I knew how to tell you so you would never doubt how much you have done.


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