Friday, 25 November 2016

Nine Years Gone


When I was a very young child, I lived in constant fear that after my parents had come in to my bedroom to say their goodnights, they would leave the house, never to be seen again. Dad was always the last to try and settle me. Very early on, I was unhappy with the actual word 'goodnight'. To my young brain, it sounded too much like 'goodbye' - too final. If he accidentally uttered 'goodnight' while tucking me in, tears of panic would ensue and it would take some time to calm me down. Eventually, after much trial and error, he found some words that I was okay with. 'Nighty night for now', he'd say cheerily, as he switched out my light. My infant logic determined that Dad's calming phrase contained a firm promise that the night was only temporary and everything would be as it should be come the morning. I slept easy.

Nighty night for now Dad.

11 comments:

C said...

So touching.
I think your Dad's idea was perfect. Nighty night - or goodbye - for now, is so comforting. A lovely way to say one's farewells in any context.

The Swede said...

Thanks C. It's amazing how clearly I remember it over 50 years later.

drew said...

I loved that post Swede.

Spence said...

My that's some profound stuff! It's good that you've been able to voice it and hopefully come to some sort of terms with it.

Swiss Adam said...

Lovely post Swede.

The Swede said...

Drew. Thanks.

Spence. Just a funny little childhood memory to mark the anniversary of Dad's passing.

Marie said...

Hi Mr. S,

How fortunate you are that you had such a great relationship with your Dad. He sounds like a lovely man.

Rol said...

A very touching post, made me think of putting my own boy to bed and how he shouts "bye bye" then "night night" alternatively back at me as I walk down the stairs.

The Swede said...

Hi Marie. Thanks for your kind words. (I tried the invitation you sent me a few times, but with no joy. I assume you've had a change of heart?)

Rol. My cousin and her family lived upstairs to us when I was growing up. Every night I'd hear her Dad turn out her light and say 'Night night, God bless' to her, which she would repeat back to him. Then she wouldn't let him go until he'd said it again and so it went on. It's funny the little routines we get into and stranger still that I can remember those of myself and my cousin all these years later.

Marie said...

Mr. S,
The blog is public now - just click on my profile for the link.

Alyson (WIAA,A?) said...

He sounds as if he was a great dad and thanks for sharing. My dad died just over 13 years ago now and I still think of him every day. It has been very telling discovering just how often he has popped up in my blog - He was the one that read the stories and who I watched old movies (specifically musicals) with. I do worry that the mums have a different relationship with their children because they are usually just so much more hands on whereas the dads can have these special routines.

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