Here's something about my Dad: He never, ever talked about dying. It was as if his refusal to acknowledge the possibility of death would prevent it from ever happening to him.Except, there was this one time when Ryan was a baby. Dad and I were talking and he told he me that he "hated like hell" that he wouldn't be alive to see Ryan graduate from high school.
I was shocked. This was an incredibly un-Dadlike statement. Also, I didn't agree.
"I don't know," I said. "Grandma made it into her nineties. You will, too."
Here's another thing about my Dad: He liked to argue. A lot. I braced for his counterpoint, but all he said was, "I hope you're right, but I don't think so."
And that was that. End of discussion.
I've been thinking a lot about my Dad during the run-up to Ryan's graduation.I don't have a strong belief in the afterlife, at least not in the traditional, Christian sense. Still, I'd like to think that Dad was with us when Ryan walked across that stage and accepted his diploma.
I am very proud of my son.
And I know my father is, too.