Alone — A father’s journey

wesley chapman
Jun 3, 2015 · 5 min read

All alone…

A feeling we all have from time to time.

A feeling we eradicate as quickly as possible.

A feeling that can overtake our minds and cause us to wander inside ourselves to places we wish to remain vacant from.

Tonight I am all alone.

Even the moon has left me; leaving me all alone in darkness from every angle.

No one is waiting for me to tuck them in.

No one is waiting for my arms to wrap around them and tell them “I love you.”

Tonight I am all alone.

Tonight I am wandering inside my mind to places that have been vacant streets for quite some time.

Tonight my mind goes to places I have rarely traveled.

Thinking thoughts that I rarely allow to present themselves.

My heart aches as I ponder over the one street that can truly wreck me to the core.

The one thing that can paralyze my body, my soul, and leave me curled on the floor busting into tears.

Tonight I am all alone thinking about my baby boy.

My little boy that smiles every time I say his name.

My little boy that lights up a every room he enters.

My little boy that stands without fear and knows that he can fly.

My mind is drifting to the first moment I held him in my arms.

The first time he smiled back at me.

The first step he took.

The first time he ran into my arms.

The first hug he gave me and would not let go.

The first time I dropped him off knowing it would be months before I was allowed to see him again.

The first “FaceTime” we shared.

The first time I saw him ride a bike.. (well, that is, I saw a video of it)

The first time he graduated from a school class… (well, that is, I saw a photo of it)

The first time he lost a tooth… (well, that is I heard all about it)

Tonight I saunter through my mind just wishing I was not alone.

Tonight I miss him dearly.

Tonight I wish to hold him tight.

Tonight I pray he dreams of me.

Tonight I pray for him and me.

This vacant street in my mind is dark and full of questions.

Full of broken glass from windows some have tried to enter.

Blown-down doors and signs that read “DO NOT RETURN” lace the buildings of my street.

A single light is shimmering from an attic loft far into the distance.

The light is soft and barely visible in the dark vastness of my street.

As I walk to the light I see more and more desolation all around.

Not a footprint in the dust that covers my entire street.

I continue forward with the glistening light acting as my lighthouse, my guidance on my street.

The light is getting brighter as I meander farther down the deserted street.

What is this light?

Why is it here in the abandoned ruins of my mind?

As I dig deeper and deeper I now begin to see a shape behind the light.

It is moving.

It is writing.

I am getting close enough that through the silence I can hear the tap, tap of the keys.

The shape is now morphing into a silhouette.

A silhouette of a man.

As I approached the light I can now see a fragile, worn, man with his head down writing.

He is writing with such vigor and lust.

He is hunched over, wearing a hat and an oversized coat.

The dust and cobwebs make it hard to see the details of his face.

I am now close enough to touch the man, yet I fear that interrupting him would cause some great mishap in the universe of my mind.

I stare at him amazed; he has not risen his head to see me roaming all around his hunched and frail state.

Nothing I seem to do stops him from writing, nor does he seem to even acknowledge my presence in his space.

Bravely I circle him. Trying desperately to see his face. To see something that would give me a clue as to who he is and what he is writing.

I must know who is my street. Who would spend the time in the desolation of my mind?

The light that once was twinkling in my mind now becomes a steady glow.

The man that once was writing with such passion and such speed, begins to slow his hands and let them breathe.

He leans back, places his hands behind his head and in the moment I see something.

Something that shocks me to my depths.

I see me.

I see my eyes, my nose.

I see myself.

The man looks at me with his hands behind his head.

He says nothing, he just smiles.

“Who are you?” I asked with fury.

“I am your son,” he answers me with gusto and no reprieve.

I hit my knees and place my head in my hands, tears rushing down my face.

I shake from pain. The reality of my street has worn into my soul.

I scream at him with such ardor as I must know…

“How is this possible? How are you here? Why are you so old? What are you writing? Have I missed everything in your life?”

The questions just pour from my soul.

“Daddy,” he replied as he walked over to me, kneeled down by my side, placed his arms around me and said,

“Daddy I am always with you. I am always here. I am writing my life so you will never miss a moment because I will share with you all the things
that matter most to me. Even if they tell you do not return I will still be sitting right here. No matter my age, no matter how dark it gets, no
matter where I am, I am always your son.”

Tonight I traveled to the darkness of my mind and saw the light of my baby boy.

Tonight in my mind I am comforted to know that he will forever be with me.

He will forever be my son.

Tonight in my loneliness I am reminded that families are forever.

That you are never alone when you are loved.

Tonight I found peace in being all alone.

    wesley chapman

    Written by

    Founder of @a_humanproject and the ultimate water boy.