Do we ever fully appreciate what our parents give us? It took my father’s death to reveal the many gifts and blessings he bestowed on me. Til his death, I had been oblivious to them. But since his death, my father has been with me more than when he was alive. The force of his love is unending…
Eulogy for my father. Read at his funeral..
“My Dad’s dead.
Strange sounding words.
My dad died the way he lived.
Quietly. With few words.
Compassionately. Without complaint.
Positive to the end.
I’m not going to talk about what my father was like in general.
You all experienced him in your own way.
I experienced him as his son.
And as with any parent-child relationship, we set about learning from one another.
And my learnings were and continue to be quite remarkable.
In the past few days, I’ve learned that what my dad had to offer me didn’t stop when his mortal life ended. My dad, in dying the way he did, has filled me with boundless gratitude – something I’ve struggled to bring into and keep in my life. Thank you dad.
In death, he has re-opened my eyes to the love of friends and to the power of generosity.
He has reminded me of the wisdom of simplicity and the healing power of letting go.
I am who I am today in large part because of my father. I’m proud of who he was and who I became. He taught me – quietly, by example, rather than through words. He’ll continue to teach me because the power of his spirit will never be gone. It continues to reside within me.
My dad was very generous. He gave me many gifts – the most valuable of which were not material.
He gave me the gift of love – of knowing that I always had someone to whom I could turn. And deep, deep roots of groundedness arose from that love.
He gave me the gift of freedom to become whoever and whatever I chose to become.
He gave me the gift of compassion so that I could share it with others.
At times over the years, I failed to see the gifts and lessons my dad offered.
I recoiled against his impatience. But what I failed to realize was that his impatience offered me a mirror into my own impatience. A mirror I couldn’t look into for all so long. And so I blamed him at times. I’m sorry dad. I ask for your forgiveness.
My dad as my mirror was and remains a tough teacher. But undoubtedly my most important teacher. Thank you dad.
Thank you for your life.
Thank you for choosing me to be your son.
Thank you for your gifts.
Thank you for your mirror.
You’ll never be gone because you live within me.”