I look at this picture, and it still doesn’t seem real that he’s gone, or that it has been 6 months since he died. In some ways it seems like a lot longer, and some it seems like the time has flown by in the blink of an eye. In some ways, it makes sense, in some ways it still doesn’t click that he’s gone. Some days I still find myself planning to call him. Habits, I guess. I don’t know that losing a parent ever gets easier, it just gets to be different than it was.
Sunday was the first time I have gone to visit my Dad since we laid him to rest in June. I don’t have a good excuse for not visiting. The cemetery isn’t that far. I just haven’t made it. Work, life, baby, everything has kept me busy, and I really didn’t know what to say. We found his spot, and I stood there, and cried. I didn’t have any words, just an outpouring of emotions. I missed my Dad at that moment so much, I grieved for my loss, for Isabella’s loss, my mom’s…I just hated that he was gone.
When he first died, a friend of mine said, “It doesn’t ever get easier, it just becomes different”. The happy memories start taking over the bad. I still remember how frightened he looked a few weeks before he passed away- wild-eyed and panic stricken as I tried to find any facility that could take him. That is slowly fading, and his happy dance that he did when I told him I was finally pregnant is replacing it.
I was, and still am, so fortunate to have had an amazing man as my Daddy. He was smart, artistic, funny, and brave. He put others before himself and his safety. He taught me to love travel and to rebel against a stagnant life, to seek out happiness, but not at the expenses of others. He tried to teach me to not take myself so seriously (something I am still working on), and to concoct odd food combinations (kipper snack ramen, anyone?? No?)…He gave me my huge hair, and my love of 80’s music (hmmm…the two go well together), and to help those less fortunate than myself.
In short, he made me who I am today, and gave me the traits that I hope to instill in my child.
Again, I still miss him so much, and I loathe the PTSD that took him away from us too early, but I am so lucky to have had him in my life as long as I did.
Here’s to you, Dad. You’re still so, so missed and always loved.