This I Believe

Katherine - Dover-Foxcroft, Maine
Entered on March 6, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30

I believe in energy. As a child, my family went to church together every Sunday. The way we chose what denomination to attend to was not based on our beliefs – but rather where my father had a job. He was an organist choir master in New York City where there is always an opening to some house of worship.

Growing up I believed in just about everything; Santa, the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy, that holding my breath while the football is in the air will help the Patriots score the touchdown, yelling “shark” would make my younger sisters miss a basketball shot and most importantly I believed that dreams would come true.

After some time, and many different churches, such as Episcopalian, Roman Catholic, Congregationalist, and more, I came up with my own beliefs. I felt had too because to me some faiths seemed too strict, not strict enough, even contradictory at times, but mostly they seemed outdated to me. Essentially my set of beliefs was anything that got me through the day successfully and happily.

I was lucky to get 17 happy years with my family until we temporarily fell apart temporarily while struggling with my father through his 6 years of cancer and eventual death. After this I felt I had lost all my beliefs. It was the hardest time in my life and probably just when I needed to believe in something the most – I felt I had nothing.

Through intense and difficult counseling I slowly began to accept my father’s death and what life without him would mean for me. Someone missing at the dinner table every night, nobody to watch Sunday football with, most importantly to me; nobody to walk me down the isle.

Although the past 4 years without him have been hard, there are many memories I have of him which I keep with me everyday and recall frequently. My family and I are just coming to a time now where we can think about Dad and laugh at our memories of him instead of cry. But where is he?

I must say I believe mostly in science. Although this might make me sound like a dork, what often comes to mind is the law of conservation of energy, which states that energy can neither be created nor destroyed, simply transferred. I believe this is true not only because of science but because I don’t understand how my father and his energy could be alive on earth one second, and simply nothing the next.

The day my father died one of our close family friends that was in the hospital room with us asked to keep the window open; dad needed a place to go. I thought about this for a long time and I’m glad we did this. His spirit needed to be free, but I’d also like to think that part of Dad was transferred into me, my mom, my two sisters, and anyone else he felt deserved a little part of him.

I try not to imagine that literally part of his spirit permeated through me like in a scary movie but more like since he’s not using his creativity anymore maybe I was lucky enough to get a bit of his. I’m still waiting to see something concrete everyday of how I might have acquired a piece of him; until then, I guess I have to believe. Although I still feel like I’m waiting, my mother says parts of me remind her of my father all the time. I believe my Dad is still with me, through his energy.