My father's look

My father’s look

“Until my thirteenth year, I led a simple life, not always easy but within a balanced family. My father, both demanding and affectionate, was my benchmark and my example. I loved observing him, especially his gaze in which I felt many things happening. As a Christian, he cultivated the virtues of fidelity, righteousness and charity. He was generous with his colleagues as well as with strangers, and I felt this openness in his manner. to address the other.

And then, one night, my father had a stroke, leaving himself paralyzed and aphasic overnight. The flame that shone in his eyes disappeared. I no longer had any exchanges with him, neither verbal nor physical. For me, it was one misfortune too many: two of my mother’s brothers already lived with us, one myopathic, the other weakened by the premature death of his parents. My mother was not very demonstrative in her maternal love. I lost my footing. A kind of emptiness came to inhabit me. When Dad came home two years later, I tried to hold on to certain signs. One Sunday, during mass, my eyes rested on the crucifix that had caught my attention during my first communion. And I came home firmly convinced that my father continued to draw his strength from the cross of Christ.

The time has passed. I met a young man, started a serious relationship, started working as a teacher. But I still felt so bad inside. I often went to the Assumptionist novitiate located at the end of the village. The presence of these young people determined to give their lives to Christ disturbed me. I found this approach very beautiful.

One Sunday morning, while I was spending the weekend with my parents, the priest offered to take communion to my father. While receiving the host, Dad looked at me and I recognized the flame that I saw shining in his eyes before his stroke. Some time later, another scene grabbed me: that of my father in tears in front of the television where it had just been announced that John Paul II had been the victim of an attack. The embers in me became a fire. God ended up taking all the space and I chose a path other than marriage. I never regretted it.”

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