I heard that one of my colleagues had recently lost his father. I asked him about it, and he shared this story.
My “step” father who raised me since age of 9 and who served REALLY as my Father/Dad… died on Saturday 10 days ago.
I spent more than 2 months in a California hotel, visiting him this past summer, when he was still happy and walking and living life… tending his vegetable garden, and not taking any chemo.
His cancer was two separate types of terminal lung cancer, one in each lung… so he chose to not do chemo.
My blood father, whom I hadn’t spoken to, by choice – for more than 32 years, died two days later.
I had no idea that he was dying or had cancer also, until about 4 days before.
Strangely, I had been praying for each of them, on alternate days, all day long for about 4 weeks before they died.
So, I was able to reduce my resentment toward my blood father for all the mental cruelty he had put me thru for the 1st half of my life, until age 28, when I mentally “divorced” him.
The praying for him, gave me a sense of compassion and peace, and love for that part of myself represented by him.
I had no idea he needed prayers.
It’s almost as if I “manifested” him coming back into my life, when my uncle made his daughter (my cousin) write to my wife to tell me to call him. My whole family knew I never wanted to speak to him again.
It turns out, he never woke up during those final 4 days, after I called my uncle, but I was able to tell my uncle I forgave his brother, my blood father.
When my step-Dad died Saturday, it was very sad.
When my blood Dad died on Monday, I felt nothing, unless it was relief… but I was glad to have released him and to feel absolutely no resentment.
It’s just weird they would die almost on the same day.
All my life since age 9, I never called my “step”-Dad my Step-Dad. I called him Dad. He Really WAS My Dad, and I loved him dearly.
My real (blood) father, on the other hand, severely crippled my self image for the first 28 years of my life by telling me I was no good, and making it clear that I could NEVER please him, no matter what.
If I had actually gotten the opportunity to tell him I forgave him, he would have said: “What! Forgive me for WHAT?!!”
He was a sad case. An alcoholic all his life.
I’m glad I was able to break the mold on that one, and to transcend him.
I’ve had many father-figures in my life, from Socrates & Jesus, to Shakespeare & Ben Franklin. From Napoleon Hill to my “Step” Dad. From my career role models, to my entrepreneur role models.
I feel really happy that I did that, so when the time came, I actually felt for a day or two…
That I would be able to talk with him, if he ever woke up and could get on the phone.
However, by the time my “step” Dad died, I decided not to give him one last chance to crush me or lash out at me, and instead, I asked my Uncle to tell him I loved him, and that I said Goodbye.
In the end, I was so proud of myself for not giving him that opportunity, but also for not feeling any resentment toward him, only compassion and kindness.
This was only possible due to the 4 weeks of praying. During that 4 weeks, I healed that part of myself, that was “him” inside me.
On the other hand… My “step”-dad, who always always there for me, to the extent he could be working in manufacturing as the sole provider, raised me as the oldest of 7 kids, 5 of which WERE his blood.
What I neglected to say about him at the end, was that I was so gratified to have just pulled up the stakes, and to have spent more than 2 months with him this past summer, when he was happy and healthy, and times were good.
We went to baseball games, county fair, out to lunch & dinner, had family BBQs.
In the end he went very fast, and the way he wanted, surrounded by love, with some of us near, and some of us far, but he KNEW he was loved.
I feel very blessed to have prayed for both of them, at odd moments all thru the days – on alternate days, thru those final 4 weeks.
It’s just strange that both were dying of the same disease, and I didn’t even know it until the very end.
One last thing.
I continue to pray for both of them all day long, whenever I can think of it – from midnight to midnight… in rotation with 2 others.
It goes this way… Pray for –>
1) Blood Father
2) Mother (who died of cancer in 1994)
3) Step Dad
4) My Wife
I switch at midnight, and rotate through again.
These are the four biggest influence on who I am, who I’ve been, and who I’m becoming.
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