While listening to the podcast from NPR of Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me, I had a tearful moment that was unexpected. Their celebrity guest was Dwight Yokum. I admit I don’t listen to country music, and am only vaguely familiar with his music.
During the interview, he mentioned that he wrote his first song at the age of 8. Peter asked him if he could sing some of it, and so he did. He explained that the Viet Nam war had just gone full blown and was all over the news. Here were his lyrics (apologies to DY and his fans if I get something not exactly right):
My daddy died in Viet Nam,
and there’s something I just don’t understand,
how far is heaven,
and when can I go?
Recently I have been thinking of my parents a lot. Probably because there’s some major life changes in the works for me and Danielle. But I can’t pick up the phone and call mom and dad and share the news like I used to. Mom went home 6 years ago, dad 5. And yet I still want to pick up the phone and speed dial them regularly.
Some days it seems like they were just taken home yesterday, and others it seems like they have been gone longer than I care to imagine. And while Dwight’s song referenced his daddy dying in Viet Nam (he didn’t, btw), my father didn’t die in Viet Nam either. But he is gone from this world. And while I know he’s happy, his and mom’s absence still hurts.
Dear Lord, when do I get to come home and be with you and my parents?