Around the Horn host Tony Reali delivered a very poignant follow-up to the social media post that he wrote on Father’s Day on Sunday, expressing the supreme duality of emotions he and his wife Samiya were feeling. They were expecting twins. One, Amadeo, passed right before childbirth. The other, Enzo, came to Earth in an emergency delivery, and has since come home healthy:
Heartened by Father’s Day wishes. In recognition that this day like all things in life could mean different things to different people -parent and child, positive and negative-I’d like to speak here about fathers who’ve experienced loss. This month I became one. Anyone within a galaxy of me knows we were expecting twins. We lost Amadeo in the moments leading up to childbirth. We delivered Enzo weeks early in an emergency. Last week was our memorial mass for Amadeo. This week Enzo came home happy, healthy and strong. The duality of all this – the anguish and the joy – is impossible to grasp. But it’s one we know we must navigate. For me that means two things: giving voice to our feelings, and allowing others to lift us when we can’t shoulder the load of those feelings. The heaviness of giving a eulogy for a son who never had a chance to breathe. Having to talk to our just-old-enough-to-know daughter who was expecting two siblings. These are impossible moments; how can any parent go forward? Ever be whole? Consider that grief could mean meeting ourselves where we actually are. That’s what I’m talking about when I talk about navigating feelings. Recognizing we didn’t get to know Amadeo- but sure as anything we felt him. Felt his kicks, felt his presence. That feeling is life. I am not somebody who thinks everything happens for a reason. I’ve spent time here & here pledging that it’s ok to not be ok. For me the recognition that life can be out of our control is necessary; how we respond is what we do control, and it’s pivotal and determining. But what if it requires more than that? How we choose to respond, but also: how others positively respond to us, for us. And that’s what I’m talking about when I talk about allowing others to lift us. Example: In our instance, a twin stroller is on every block, an expectant family at every park. That can pierce your heart, but you can’t let it pierce you every day. Or a day like Mother’s Day or Father’s Day, it’s even trickier. Isn’t grief part and proof of humanity? What if it’s humanity you need to open yourself up to? To allow to shepherd you through trials of grief?
At the end of the address on Around the Horn, Reali expressed empathy for the children who are separated from their parents at the border.
It goes without saying that our thoughts are with Reali and his family in the wake of this profoundly sad tragedy.