To a Daughter with Love

Through the direction and nature of our attention, we prove ourselves to be partners in creation.”

Ian McGilchrist

We said goodbye to our daughter today, sent her back home half across the world. My heart is with her now as she will be boarding her first flight. Two nights sitting up, stale airport air. Then pounding north from Johannesbug 4 hours, further still along a quiet road beneath eucalyptus trees. The hot, red earth, the smell of Africa, so far from the snows of Canada, where the sky wept as we drove home

She came with love and gave of herself, while Bill recouped and rested his heart. While I had another epidural for pain, so that I can better carry on. The pain is much worse for the two weeks following the injection. I gather that is rare, but it is my pattern, while the cortisone is slowly dispersing.

So she came – and we had two weeks of laughter, kindness and companionship. I remember my mother saying, perhaps to comfort herself, that she felt she knew me so much better because when we saw each other, we were immersed. She knew the pattern of my days, just as our daughter does now. She will know that we have a glass of wine at 4.00 and the shadow of her presence lingers. I can hear her step on the stairs and look across the room to her empty chair.

So what I have to do now is create for myself a reality filled with sunlight and her laughter. I have the choice: to see the flowers or the dung. I can choose my story.

And God whispers in my ear, “Don't be sorry for yourself – there is richness.”


About UntraveledRoads

Fascinated by life, looking for answers to chronic pain and finding unexpected gifts. Interested in people, ideas, healing and humour. I am very happily married with three children and a kitten. As English born immigrants to Canada, we have family spread overseas, a daughter in South Africa and one in England. We also run a charity in South Africa to educate black, rural South African Women. Our first girl from a rural township has just graduated as an accountant from Johannesburg University and got a good job in a bank.
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2 Responses to To a Daughter with Love

  1. tersiaburger says:

    How beautifully you articulated your family life and your love for your daughter! I am grateful and happy for you that you had this amazing visit. Hugs as the longing now enfolds you once again.

    • Bless you. That is so generous of you after your loss. Always feel that if we have enough courage, long distance families can be special – everything is always so intensely packed into so little time. Remember my parents in their 80’s flying over for our elder daughter’s wedding. It was bittersweet as we all knew it might be the last time, which it was. My mother died the next year. I read an eulogy, put together by email from them in an English church. They followed the service from afar, our elder daughter with her baby in South Africa, our son beside the Pacific, our younger daughter scattering petals on an Ontario lake. Affection and hugs to you, Tersia.

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