Wednesday, October 20, 2010


My father has offered to buy us a car. He called the other day, and told us to look around for a used car, around $2,500.00-$3,000.00. I have such mixed emotions about it. I am thrilled. I will be able to re-join society, so that part makes me ecstatic. It has been so difficult without a car, this seems like answered prayers. Yet, David is 40, and I am 39. I would have been happy when I was 17 years old, and my Dad offered to buy me a car. I thought he owed me one, back then, at that selfish age. Not so much now. I feel incredibly guilty, and irresponsible, and, childish. I haven't even begun to really look around for one, as it gives me an icky feeling. I feel foolish. We are at the age that I felt that we would have it all together. Kids, a house, dance lessons, being able to provide for everyone. It all was supposed to be seamless at this stage of our lives. It wasn't supposed to be such a daily struggle. Counting diapers, and multiplying that by days until payday was not supposed to be part of the equation.
I love my father. He has always been my cheerleader. He has always looked at me, with a bit of marvel in his eyes, or at least that is what I like to think I am seeing. He is kind, and funny. He does not speak harshly about other's. He has a belief in God that both astounds me, and freaks me out. Everything is about his faith. He sees it as the answer to everything. The months before I met David, he and I were driving together, and he looked at me, and said  "he is coming....God is sending you someone." He told me, after I met David, and I told him over grilled cheese sandwiches at the diner in East Hampton that he was "the one", that he knew God was sending him. He felt him traveling toward me. Part of me thought how incredibly beautiful. I wanted to believe him. Part of me also thought..."Jeez Dad...I am 29. He most likely was gonna show up soon, if he was going to at all! "
My father became a deacon back in 2001. He is almost like a priest. Kind of like the second in charge, but with a wife. I recall the day he was ordained. It was a very long, elaborate, service, in a cathedral. The bishop was there, and a kagillion priests. The ordination process was long, and ritualistic. Lot's of prayers, and incense. There came a part when the men who were being ordained, had to line the center aisle of the cathedral. They stood next to the pew where their families were seated. They had to lie on the ground, face down, and prostrate themselves. They assumed the position of Jesus, nailed to the cross. The music in the cathedral was overwhelmingly powerful, and watching my father, dressed in a robe, lying on the ground, with his eyes closed, wanting this so badly, and having studied for years at the seminary for this moment, was beyond words. His faith was right there, before all of us, and I could not stop looking at him, and weeping. It was both beautiful, and frightening. I have wondered many times what was going through his mind, at that moment.
He has continued to let his faith be his guide, in everything he does. He prays for me, and my family. He worries for us. He has always had an encouraging word to say, although it is always laced with religion. At times, this frustrates me. I sometimes want to talk about things, or problems, in a factual manner. I don't want to make God part of the solution. When I talk to him about David going to the Middle East, or our home being foreclosed on, it makes me cringe when he starts saying things like "God will not abandon you", or "ask God to help you. He hears you". I need more tangible solutions. When he speaks of God, as often as he does, at times he seems to be the brainwashed member of a cult. Like something magical will happen, if I just have faith. I pray at night sometimes, and envision sparkly fairy dust falling like snow, on the roof of my house. When we awaken, it will all be over. Is this what he means?
There are days when the faith I have seems to dwindle to nothing. I feel the rope holding us all together, frayed, and stretched. A cartoon image of one last string of hemp, holding us all together. Then my father will call me, and tell me that it is going to be OK. Some days, I hang up the phone, and roll my eyes. I think that he is an eternal optimist, with no grasp of reality. Then there are days that I think that maybe, he knows. Maybe he knows more than I do. Like when he told me David was en route to me. Maybe he was speaking fact. Maybe he knows that we are going to be alright. He has some sort of inside information. When he says that we are going to be OK, he is stating a fact. His faith has never wavered. He has never been disappointed in it. He has never doubted it, for even a moment.
Maybe, he is right.

1 comment:

  1. Erin, go look for a car and say, thank you dad!

    Some people's faith is amazing and a force of its own.