Life is often said to be unfair due to the many different ways that it can change so suddenly and leave you feeling betrayed. One moment you can be living in happiness and the very next complete sadness due to no cause of your own. This happens when a family member, close friend, or love is taken from you in a sudden accident or unforeseen health problem like a heart attack. Before it happens, you have your life together and then a piece of it is stripped away. It’s a terrible feeling and leaves you with a hole in your soul that will never truly be replaced. You are left with questions and a yearning for closure that you know will never go away. It’s an awful experience that I wouldn’t wish on even my most bitter of enemies.
I have experienced what it’s like to lose someone close without any kind of warning, but I’ve also had the very unique experience of an unexplainable bit of closure. My father always had problems with his heart since as early as I could remember as a child and everyone in the family always had a feeling that he’d go out some day because of it. It was a grim truth that we all, including him, had come to terms with. But you never truly know when something like that is going to finally strike and take a person away. Dad was not afraid of death and always had his priorities in order in case it finally came. The only thing that always really bothered him was not being able to say goodbye. I often wonder now if that’s what let him visit me the night he died even though I was in a different country and thousands of miles away.
It was a very unassuming weekday night for me as I was preparing to go to bed. I work in sales and often travel abroad for my job and happened to be in Singapore this time around. I was staying in a hotel near the airport and had such a busy day that I pretty much resigned to my room as soon as the work meeting had ended. I skipped dinner and just ordered up to my room. I spent the rest of the night just writing emails and listening to music. I had an early day the next morning, so I figured I should get to bed and got under the covers before flipping off the light next to the bed. The city lights illuminated the room in a blanket of dim blue light. I had only been in bed a couple of minutes before I saw him.
Standing near the door to the room was a man that I immediately recognized as my father even in the dimness of the light coming in from the windows. He had on his what he always called his “pajamas” which was just a white tank top and boxer shorts. I should have wondered what he was doing there or even how he was there, but I did not. I knew exactly what he was doing there. I didn’t move and didn’t say anything at first, instead just watching as a soft blue glow of light formed around his outline. I can’t say for certain how long he stood there, but it seemed like long enough for me to feel safe and loved. I smiled at my father and he returned the smile before I closed my eyes and went to sleep.
The next morning, I woke up to a few family members messages on my social media account saying that it was urgent and that I should contact them right away. But I already knew what the news was going to be: my dad had passed. I never questioned what I saw that night and just knew that it was his way of making sure that neither of us would ever be left with that dreadful feeling of loss without closure.