Susan's Blog

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Thanks, Dad


When I first learned about him,
I was crazy with it
Losing my mind
Chewing off my own leg to get away

You said, “he’s still our Nat.”
And I stayed.
I did not realize then how much strength and courage it took
For you not to cry
But to think of me instead
And to think of Nat
And how he is, still just Nat.
Just that, but so much.

You knew from the first moment of our black certainty
What I needed
Despite what you needed —
The pain, the broken dream
Of the first grandson
Not broken at all
You smiled and shrugged
Wisdom in your not-knowing
He can live at home
He can do anything
Let’s get out the books
Let’s pick up the twigs
Let’s get out the bikes
Let’s get out the prayer shawl
Let’s run.

He’s still our Nat,
After all
And that is that.

9 comments

Believe it or not this is one of the greatest things that you have ever written, I love it like I loved your book. This has touched me in a way and at a time that is most special and I thank you and your father for it. Sometimes it takes the insight of someone who has walked before to know what we need because at one time in their life they needed it too! Believe it or not you have encourage thousands of spectrum parents (through your book) in the way that your dad encouraged you…Sometimes I would wince when you would say, “it isn’t the end of the world” cause when the diagnosis is new it sure feels that way!..I have come to a place where I know that what you speak is he truth..this place is called acceptance….and when you get to it you see the kid you love…your nat and my Sam….

— added by Kristen on Tuesday, September 26, 2006 at 10:41 pm

This is beautiful. I’m glad your father was so wise and gave you an early and gentle push toward acceptance.

— added by Camille on Wednesday, September 27, 2006 at 2:53 am

Yeah, your Dad is pretty darned cool. Very nice poem.

— added by Andrew on Wednesday, September 27, 2006 at 8:05 am

Wow, that was really powerful. Thank you for sharing that. I also had the right kind of support from my dad when I felt I was going to fall into the black abyss. What a beautiful picture.

— added by mumkeepingsane on Wednesday, September 27, 2006 at 9:15 am

This touched me because my father passed away 5 years before my son was born. He was an old fashioned, blue-collar man of few words. I have always wondered how he would deal with his grandson’s diagnosis. I would like to think that he would have handled it the same way that your father did….with support and absolute acceptance.

— added by marlene on Wednesday, September 27, 2006 at 10:14 am

Unconditional love. It’s beautiful!

— added by Two Roads on Wednesday, September 27, 2006 at 10:14 am

That is an awesome and powerful love poem Susan.

— added by Someone Said on Wednesday, September 27, 2006 at 12:44 pm

What a beautiful tribute to your dad. The poem is absolutely beautiful and certainly describes the measure of the man.

I have been lucky enough to have benefited from Mel’s remarkable wisdom. He is an awesome person. Everyone who get to know Mel is lucky to have him as a part of their life experience.

Ken

— added by Ken Tavares on Tuesday, September 23, 2014 at 6:46 am

What a wonderful man, your Dad. He is able to see the simplicity of the best healer, love.

— added by Candy on Tuesday, September 23, 2014 at 7:25 pm

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