I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. It was the voice of my stern, disapproving father saying the words I had longed to hear for so many years. “Son, I love you. Everything is going to be all right.” It was 1972. Because of an LSD overdose, I lay in a semi-comatose state in a hospital bed in Daytona Beach, Florida. My dad was cradling me in his arms and running his fingers through my shoulder-length hair, telling me— his rebellious, misfit son—that he really loved me.This can’t be happening, I thought to myself as I listened to the faint beeping of medical equipment. My dad was telling me he loved me! This was the same overpowering dad who months earlier had shoved me to the floor in our home, grabbed a pair of scissors, and violently cut off my hippie-style hair after telling me I was a disgrace to the family. Now he was tenderly whispering to me about love, forgiveness, and acceptance. Even though I was in a drug-induced fog, his words sank deep into my soul.“Son, I love you.”
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