10 years, 10 dreams about Daddy

This is the first in a series of 10 posts I plan to write as we near the ten year anniversary of my father’s passing on August 15, 2007


“A full moon on August 15th … families reunite under the full moon.”


So the saying goes in Chinese about the 15th of August. In the lunar calendar, this day is the Mid-Autumn Festival, traditionally a time for families to get together. Since 2007, the date “August 15″hasn’t had its usual festive ring for me. That is because on August 15, 2007 (in the “normal” solar calendar), my nuclear family of three broke apart forever. That morning, I watched my father gasp through his last breath as his body gave way to the cancer that had found its way to his brain.

Now it’s 2017. Ten years have passed. In that time, I’ve grown, laughed, cried, succeeded at some things, failed at others, and learned a whole lot. Tonight, I just put to bed an eight-month-old baby boy who takes his name from a grandfather he hasn’t met. The circle of life continues.

Ten years feels like a nice round number, a good time to take a pause, reflect, and perhaps grieve in a way I haven’t allowed myself to before.

I feel my way through the world in prose. So, as we near the tenth anniversary of my father’s passing, I hope to share ten “Dreams About Daddy,” as well as resurrect an old blog I wrote in the early years after his departure.


Here goes, “Dreams About Daddy”, dream #1, dated November 13, 2010:

Last night, I cried in my dream. I cried when I realized I was dreaming.

It was a dream that made sense. No flying people or crazy car chases, the telltale signs that my subconscious was driving. It all seemed so normal, plausible, real:

I was in an office – my new office – going over work with team mates who were just getting to know me. As we huddled around one computer screen, he walked up, sharply dressed as always, gliding in his long confident strides. He stopped to see what we were working on. We suddenly felt so important receiving his attention.  I, especially, was happy that he would hear the witty remark I was about to make.

I said my funny thing. The others laughed. And he backed me up, added to my joke, delighting us with his signature humor.

I looked at him, so pleased that we could share this laugh together. I looked at him, glowing in my happiness, so pleased that we could stand in this sunlit room together, chat together.

Then, I saw that it was a dream. I saw that it couldn’t be. It wasn’t real.

Panicked, I seized his hands, holding one tightly in both my hands, and rushed the words out before they drowned in the oncoming tide of tears,

“Daddy, I miss you so much.”