It was nine years ago today (at about this exact moment) that my incredible father, Howard Morris, passed away.
Not a day goes by that I don’t think about him. Nine years seems like a long time. I suppose it is. When time is attached to such a special person, the pain of loss hits a level where it seems to more or less stabilize as one big emotional chunk. I now know what I will carry for the rest of my life.
He was like my brother. Everything that goes with that type of relationship was there. I don’t want to bore you with the details because I’ve written a lot about our relationship in posts over the years. But what I will say is that I woke up today recalling what I think were some fascinating situations he and I shared, and ultimately conquered. Our relationship was good, no, actually, it was GREAT! Why? Many reasons. One being that we could and would say practically anything to each other. We trusted that neither of us was going to run off crying in a corner, burning about it for days, weeks. We did have times like that, but 9 times out of 10 it was something revolving around a crazy, friend, ex-wife or girlfriend. Each of us had bad relationships at one time or another, not all that unique. Point being that our issues didn’t last long because we had mastered a process of conquering the junk in our lives, and moving on.
My father would sometimes go to therapists. Sometimes I would join. I would say the vast majority of therapists tried, but were out of their league. They didn’t really understand my father. He was not textbook. Among other things they never truly considered the performer elements in him. He was always on stage. Most folks in show business have this issue. Some stronger than others. I understood it well, so I knew how to ride those waves. This dynamic was a common thread. Those who knew him got the message quickly that Howard was a powerful, but honest man who, ultimately, tried for attention, but just wanted to be loved. Ernest T. Bass, for lack of a better way of saying it, is what Howard Morris was all about. This is why we started this site, as opposed to a “Howard Morris” site. My father truly lives within ETB.
But getting back to time. Nine years. I suppose it does help in terms of healing, but not really. The waves of a huge loss remain fully in tact. At times I catch myself looking directly into the massive space that my father once occupied. Why? Because he was AMAZING.
I’ll always love you, dad
P.S. Thank you kindly to everyone for your thoughtful messages and loving posts. I do read all of them.