Tempus Fugit

Next week my father will celebrate his ninetieth birthday. Sadly, he won’t be able to do much celebrating. Over the past six months his health has been precarious. Today he is in a transitional health care unit in Knoxville after spending two weeks in Emory Hospital in Atlanta throughout the Christmas vacation period.

Like most people, I have uncounted memories of my father, both good and bad, made from my earliest childhood through today. In those memories he ages from his early thirties onward. Our relationship, particularly in my late teens and early twenties, has been strained at times.

I decided twenty years or so ago to make peace. I did not want to have our relationship remain contentious to the bitter end. He was, after all, my father. I was bound to him as surely as I was bound to my own heart. He was a part of me, of my life, I could never escape. “You’re just like your dad,” was an accusation or compliment I heard  more and more often as I aged.

I don’t have a lot of photographs of my father. The sketch of him was done by his sister when he was in his thirties, and  the photoshopped photo of my parents dates from shortly after they married. I’ve also included two of my better photos of dad taken recently….

Read all of Visions

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