The Last Goodbye

By , Houston, TX
“Daddy, where are you going? Please don’t leave. I want you here,” I pleaded. “Don’t worry pumpkin, I will never leave you. I will be here forever. I love you,” my father replied to my pleas. I will never forget those words that he said to me on that day. I believed him and trusted that his words were true, but they were not.
After my brother had his first birthday in 2000, my life started to go downhill. I remember that foggy autumn morning when my dad left. I gave him a hug and said that I will see you later. Little did I realize that this was the last goodbye. I stood there in the middle of the driveway with a blank, devastated expression on my face. I just stood there as my knees began to buckle and my strength decreased. I couldn’t take it anymore, so I collapsed. I fell to the floor and started crying hysterically. Without hesitation, he sped off. I carelessly ran after him, but nothing helped. He was gone. That was our goodbye. I had never been so confused in my life. Since I was only five years of age, I thought that I had done something wrong. I thought to myself, did I forget to pick up my Barbies? Did I forget to make my bed? I didn’t understand what had caused this sudden change. All I knew was that my best friend, my coach, more importantly, my father had left.
Here I am, nine years later, a different person then what I was when I was five. I thought that my world had ended. Now that I reflect back on my childhood, this huge event has made me who I am today. The lesson he has taught me is that I need to value my family relationships and that I should not take anything for granted; you never know when something unexpected might happen. I never expected for him to leave me. I definitely wasn’t prepared for this change. He has taught me that making one bad decision can effect everyone around you that love you. The bad decision that he made was that he became addicted to drugs. I looked up to my father and when I heard about his addiction, I could not lean on him anymore or trust him. My father’s absence in my life has been very hard for me because we had such a tight relationship and father-daughter bond that it devastated me. When I turned about seven or eight years old, I realized what had really happened on that foggy, autumn morning and why he had left. I now understand but I do not approve.
Whenever I am having a bad day, I think of what the great times we had together. For example, I loved to go outside and get a whiff of the fresh cool air and swing on my large wooden playhouse. I would also love to ride in the front seat of his shiny truck and sit in his lap and “drive” his large, big red truck. I think of our blissful moments together very often. Someone once said, “Memory is a way of holding onto the things you love, the things you are, the things you never want to lose,” Anonymous. All I have left are memories and a lesson to live by.





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