Conflict - Michael Hughes

It’s days like Father’s Day, that reminds me life it just a series of conflicts that I have to negotiate my way through. Like the eternal, I like food but hate my gut to the trivial tomato sauce or siracha on my eggs, Father’s Day does it like no other.

I’ve been conflicted about writing this piece. I’ve been wanting to write it for ages, at the same time avoiding it at every turn. I realise it’s the self-analysis I perform as part of my writing process I’m avoiding. As much as I like to think that I have accepted being childless, I know deep down there is a pain waiting for its chance to rise up. Do I address it, or beat it back with a big stick hoping it will go away.

Fuck, I hate conflict.

I want to be happy on Sunday. I’m a son and I have a father, who’s ailments remind me he won’t be around forever and I should be enjoying the time I have left with him. This conflict is made even more poignant by the fact that seated there in my parents lounge room will be the last two remaining Michaels. It has been a great source of pride for me growing up to be part of a long unbroken line of Michaels, but now……..

I know my dad will sit there proud of me and who I have become, as he is with all his children, but yes there is a conflict. I won’t get to sit in my dad chair, look over to my Michael and be proud of the man my wife and I created and steered to be who he is.

Of course, I will be the happy first born that my parents expect and rightly deserve. We will not broach anything deep or meaningful, as is the British way, it will be a nice time with tea and biscuits.

Michael Hughes