While dad held on to what he could, the small snippets of normal, I slowly leaned that coming home for me was an awkward place where who I was no longer fit with the person who had grown up there. It is normal to run it to people who have known you for a life time when you move back to your home town. Living just four doors up the road, two of the houses in between my parents home and mine housed neighbors I had know since 1980. It truly was a reflection of all the parts of me that had changed and those strands remained the same.
My dad was my reflection of how you could be a different person in the same place. Where I ached to shake off the small town teenager who seemed to follow me in to this new chapter, he kicked to the curb beliefs that no longer served him. It had been going on for some years. Him pulling out core beliefs, giving them a long hard look and choosing to change beliefs he had held so tightly to. My favorite was when he marched in to his new church to announce he was not in favor of same sex marriage only to have his argument pulled out from underneath him. And then to call me on the verge of tears and announce “It’s about love. How could I have ever been against anything that was about love?”
He was a proud and certain man. If he could have the humility to admit his own flawed thinking and abruptly change directions surely I could put to rest the insecurities and uncertainties that circle the edges of my mind. I could decide in that very moment that to be home, was about the love and how could I ever be against anything that was about love.