I didn’t understand it then, but I understand it now…
I had fought bitterly with dad when he moved us all to a new country, a new lifestyle, a new language. Spanish had never been my favourite subject at school and I resented having to speak it now. I had called him all sorts of names and had not really spoken to him for weeks. Mom had tried to calm me done but I would have none of it. Dad had always been my favourite parent: we would shoot hoops together, run, watch sport on TV to the exasperation of Mom. We would spend hours together in the garage working on the old Mustang we were fixing with no words needed to fill the quiet gaps. And yet he uprooted us with no explanation, with no warning. It hurt that we left the Mustang behind. It was not the car I was sad about losing, but what it meant to me: hours spent with him fiddling with the mechanics of it and just being together.
Now I have come to understand the reason why we left, I regret all the hurtful words I said, the anger I expressed, my bitterness. What I regret most is the time lost: time I could have spent with him sharing new experiences. I wish he had told us why we moved. Maybe if he had we would have been vigilant, would have noticed the strange questions being asked, and been wary of the over-friendly American girls. But it is too late now. Tears slide down my cheeks, dripping onto the still body of my father. If only I could rewrite the past. If only I knew then what I know now.
© Colline Kook-Chun, 2014
(This post was written in response to Kellie Elmore’s Free Write Friday prompt)