I stood up from my seat in the living room. It was far too normal, too comfortable.
Walking to the kitchen, I opened the fridge out of habit, as if examining for food or drink, but I neither would satisfy. Not this night. This never-ending night.
I was sixteen, and I thought Dad was dying.
I sat on a wooden chair. Wood grain cannot be comfortable, especially on this night. The unease paled compared to the turmoil within. All I knew was that Dad hadn't felt good. His stomach was bothering him when I went to bed, but he was fine. Indestructible.
This is the man I once watched punch a 400 pound sow multiple times until it released it's grip on his shoulder. I watched him work an entire day after slicing his leg to where the bone show through. This man was iron. He was all I knew about manhood. Tough, kind, and always a step ahead.
Now he is at the hospital and I am stuck in this chair! I hated this chair, this house. It was my home, and at that moment it was my hell. It burned me to not run all the way to the hospital. Somewhere my dad lay hurting. Indestructible slipping away.
I had never considered death. Not really. Sickness, not much of that either. I had never considered what life would look like fatherless. Dad could not be dying.
I got up and walked to the front door, looking outside. The darkness was absolute. I went upstairs to wake my brother. We still had to go to school. School? As the cornerstone of my world needs me, finally needs me, I have to go to school? History isn't going to fix my dad. Biology? Bad example.
The darkness was absolute right before the morning. Could the sun ever rise again? My world was drifting away like those little white floaters from the dandelion. Darkness would remain, it must.
How could my mom have left me sitting here? She wakes me to tell me that she thinks Dad had a heart attack--then leaves me to get my brother ready for school in the morning. How is that helpful!? I just want to be with my dad.
Maybe play a little baseball, he always liked baseball. God if you let him come back I will play baseball every day just to be with him! I will help out more around the house!
Dressed, brother dressed too, we step outside.
The sun is rising. Life continues, even when life stops!