RIP Papa

My Papa passed away from cancer on Wednesday morning, January 20th. I was alone with him here at home. I put my half-brother (in Buenos Aires) on speaker phone. I held his hand and he cried all the way through as we told him we loved him. He took his last breath and I stayed alone with his body until the hospice nurses finally arrived an hour later. Here in California, hospitals, emergency crews, and mortuaries are very backed up. As I waited, I wondered about infinity. I pictured my Mama and Papa’s particles dancing outside the movie theatre in Hollywood where they met. 

I thought about these excruciating 6 months as I witnessed my shy Papa lose his dignity and suffer. Judgements from others, arguments, misunderstandings…That’s all done now. All that remains are fragments of reality to piece together. 

My dad went to university in Buenos Aires for his degree in Chemistry. Despite his life and career path drastically shifting in a country where he struggled with the language, he’s always been a man of science. He raised me to think critically and he taught me about confirmation biases. “Everyone is susceptible to this,” he’d say (in Spanish.) It’s been so painful to see how despite having such a curable cancer in its early stages, he took the Steve Jobs route, opting for exotic teas, mere dietary changes, and refusing life-saving treatments until things got so advanced he came to his senses. He told me he was sorry and shared his regret. I don’t blame him at all. As I’ve watched so many people spread comforting lies during these times.

As a child, whenever we were out of something, my dad would tell me to ask “Soledad.” I’d ask “her” and he’d pull things out of thin air. As a teen, his magic tricks began to annoy me as every time I’d ask for something there’d be a process before he pulled it out of his sleeve, behind his back, or (somehow) the ceiling. I always thought “Soledad” was a person, but apparently, it was “loneliness.” I never asked why. And he eventually stopped. As an adult, I was too shy to ask him to do his magic tricks again. And now that I sit in the loneliness of this now empty house, I wonder if everything I need is hiding in thin air.

~ by Keira Dazi on January 25, 2021.

One Response to “RIP Papa”

  1. This made me emotional…

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