When someone dies, they no longer get to advocate for themselves. They can’t state the position they took on any topic. They can’t defend decisions they had made. I guess the reason they say you shouldn’t speak ill of the dead stems from the fact that the narrative becomes one-sided when they cross the great egress. I get that. I really do. My dad apparently suffered crippling depression. I’ve seen artwork he has produced; sketches and paintings, that have more than shone a light on the struggles he lived with on a daily basis. I’ve heard from many people that my dad was a very depressed man. The Sheriff finalized that when arriving at the scene of the accident, finding the seatbelt unused and the empty bottle of bourbon. I used to think that if I made it to thirty two years of age I’d have done more for my kids than anything my dad had ever done for me. Yes, I suffer from depression. The thing that keeps me from exposing myself to liability like dying is the fact that I know first hand what happened to my family when my dad died. I saw that even his ex wife broke down in tears when he passed, almost as though she saw it coming but couldn’t believe it. My grandparents were just absolutely disabled for such a long time. They bore the absolute brunt of it, and they were the ones feeling bad for me. I truly felt bad for them, because I can’t imagine what it would be like to lose a child, and I hope to god I never do.

It’s just one of those things that has crept back into my head lately. That no matter what, knowing that I have some importance to the people I care about most is what keeps me going. It’s the reason I could never be a danger to myself, no matter how hard things could ever get. I think that my dad’s passing had a great deal of influence on that, despite the fact that the depression was probably genetic as well. That redneck motherfucker.

It’s the wildest thing to have had a countdown clock in my head since 1992. “I just have to last until this age and I’ll have done better.” But I’ve done so much better. My dad didn’t even have a job when he died.

I don’t know. It’s just something I’ve had rattling around in my head that needed to be written.