father

‘My husband bungee corded my kid to the backseat. Not kidding. She was 3 years old. I honestly didn’t believe it. But there she was, strapped in a makeshift five-point harness.’

“He let me sleep in. Imagine my shock waking up at 10 a.m. to not a sound in the world. Not the pitter patter of little feet, not the tugging of my sheets followed by, ‘mom, mom, mom,’ not the sounds of cartoons. I yawned, threw my hair into a messy bun and made my way downstairs thinking I would find an empty house or sleeping angel children. I didn’t find that.”

‘Hun, whatcha doing? You ok in there?’ Silence. ‘Hun…?’ I tried turning the knob. Locked. My heartbeat grew faster. My voice got louder. I banged my fists on the door. I couldn’t save him.’

“We went to bed, said our ‘I love you’s.’ He rubbed my back as I drifted off to sleep. At 5:00 a.m., I awoke to use the bathroom. I guess he couldn’t sleep? He wasn’t in bed. He must be downstairs. The TV wasn’t on. No living room lights. Just a faint glow from the bottom of the bathroom door.”

‘Hey Dad, I want to raise your son. I want him as my own,’ I insanely told my dying father. ‘I didn’t want to put that burden on you,’ he said. He died just 18 hours later.’

“‘Adopt him. You’re supposed to be his mom. You’re the one. Tell your dad. Tell him now.’ My dad visited me in dream. I was standing in a white room. He walked towards me holding a baby wrapped in a light blue blanket. He handed him over, smiled and kissed the baby’s head. When I woke up, I knew.”

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