living conscious spirit

girl on dad's shoulders

credit: photographyonthenet

Dear Dad,

Today would have been your 106th birthday.  Although you lived to 90, there is little of my life today that you knew about. Partly because you were 40 when I was born, and I repeated that cycle with my own children. Partly because it is precisely in the years since your death that I have moved into my own, as writer, facilitator, late-blooming spiritual feminist.

Yet most parts of my life, in fact, evolved directly from you, things for which I am entirely grateful and things you would not only recognize but appreciate. Like the ‘grand-daughter who looks like me’ of your heart wish. And so much more:

For you, I learned to bake and the necessity of dessert.

To you I owe the gift of language at play and a wry sense of humor.

With you I shared many lazy Sunday afternoons biking uphill and down along the country lanes of my youth.

From you I learned love of the land, mountains, sea; and the joy of cultivating a plot of dirt for both beauty and nourishment.

By your example, I learned the importance of presence, patience and deep listening.

You lived a life of quiet moderation and deep conviction. Despite your world-wide stature as a ground-breaking chemist, you carried yourself with utmost humility. Intensely private and well-known by none, you nonetheless managed in your last years to offer me heartfelt expressions of your love. All told, you opened me to a more conscious way of living, to the spiritual feminine values that have become the underpinning of my work in the world.

I love you, Dad, and I miss you terribly.

Your ‘little sunshine’

8 thoughts on “living conscious spirit

  1. The first comment took the words out of my mouth, very heart felt. Makes me want to appreciate the time I have left with my father, so thank you for heightening my since of gratitude. Hoping your coping with the loss well, releasing the pain through writing

    • Thanks so much for your kind words, Cathy – and most especially, for your taking to heart the idea of appreciating the remaining time with your dad. One of my poems posted in Minerva Rising for Father’s Day (“Hunger”) spoke to that very issue. Kudos to you for seizing the opportunity while you still can!

  2. A beautiful and heartfelt post, my own father passed away when I was 25, it was sudden and unexpected. Though we weren’t very close, he was an intensely private man who kept everyone, including his children at arms length, nevertheless I do miss him intensely everyday.

    • That must have been so hard, Ribsy83. I would not have expected the turn of events in my dad’s final years; but in retrospect I saw that in his only-child and internalized way, he loved us very much, he just lacked the skill or ability to show it. Thanks so much for stopping by!

  3. It is the symbolic gesture that means more than you, the literal you on his shoulders Sarah. It’s a perfect illustration of what your wrote.

    • True, Rita. But it’s the one photo I actually have of him/me in physical connection. Until much MUCH later. Even so, I appreciate your comment and that you ‘got’ the gist of my feelings. Thanks for visiting and for leaving a comment!!

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