“On Meeting my Dad and then Leaving”
by Mark Haase
I only met my dad once–in a restaurant, when I was about five. Well, technically, I met him when he came to my house and brought me to the restaurant, but I don’t remember that, nor the ride home,nor much of the meal. All I recall is we ate at a German restaurant in New Orleans–Kolb’s–and I saw a sooty-looking brown rat scurrying across the restaurant floor. While eating my dessert, I said “I don’t think I can finish it” and he said, “That’s fine, just eat until you’re satisfied.”
by Chuck Lyons
When Bob Ryan was in rehab, he agonized over the insurance, the expense, over who would pay. He had worked for an insurance company, and he knew what could happen. In fact, the form letter denying or approving coverage had gone out over his name. That was before he had been fired for his drinking.
So, he worried.
He went to his classes, his meetings, did the reading and the writing. On Sundays, his wife visited with the kids. On Saturday afternoons, he watched college basketball games on TV, and on Saturday night the whole floor went out to an AA meeting.
But he heard nothing from the insurance company, and he continued to worry.
Then, after three weeks, he got a letter – a neatly typed letter on heavy cream-colored paper. “After a thorough review of your case,” it said, “we are unable to….”, and he knew he had been refused coverage.
“Damn it,” he thought as he scanned down the letter to the name at the bottom – “Robert M. Ryan.” “They were still using the same letter.”
He had, you see, denied himself.
About the authors
Mark Haase is a licensed counselor and marriage & family therapist. He lives in Louisiana with his wife and three children.
Chuck Lyons is a retired newspaper editor and a freelance writer whose articles, memoirs, stories, and haiku have appeared in a number of national and international periodicals. He resides in Brighton , near Rochester NY, with his wife Brenda and a beagle named “Gus.”