“Those who fail to 'become the river' keep the momentum going that carries others to the completion of a goal.
- Martin Espada
My father was an enigma to me, a rubik’s cube. Every time I thought I solved the riddle, it changed.
He died several years ago. I was the only one of my siblings to attend his funeral. In some ways I didn’t blame them.
Although I knew how painful that journey would be, I had to say goodbye. As I laid eyes on him that last time, I cried and I wished that I could have asked him, "Why? Why did you do the things you did?"
All these years later, I think of my father, especially on Father’s Day and I answer that riddle of who my father was.
I think of what is it that my father wanted for me and I now see he wanted all of us to have a better life than he had.
All the jobs he worked, all the schools I went to, all the classes he paid for were for me to better myself and to have a better life than he did.
His failure to become “ the river,” wasn’t a failure. It was a stepping stone for me to become that river, to lead my own family closer to that American dream he wanted for his own children. Today I see my children completing the goal that he started and now I can fully appreciate my father for not the man I wanted him to be, but for the man he was.
imperfect, a dreamer who wanted a better life for all of us.