It’s been 8 years today since I lost my Dad. At 11:57 am on Friday, June 13th 2003 he slipped away from us.
It’s hard to believe that 8 years has flown by as it seems like yesterday. Yet when I look at my life, nothing is the same. Josh was fast asleep on a little cot beside me when my Dad passed away. He was only 4 months. Zach was not even 2! Everything was different!
Would he even recognize my life now? Josh is 8, Zach almost 10. I went through a divorce (which felt like an endless painful journey) yet am happily married to my dream guy for 3 years now (this month)! I have 3 amazing skids. I still live in Toronto – but in a different house – that I love. I am in private practice.
It is amazing though that I still see my Dad in so many things I do, or in things that the kids do. Their chatty natures (or mine), their quirkiness, in the way that they walk or talk. I see so much of my Dad in Rob too – in some expressions, mannerisms, kindness and in his intelligence and ability to retain information and then teach it. I have grown to love to get up early – and see the world before it wakes up. I get why he loved doing that now! I often feel closest to him when I am on vacation, going for a walk, as I imagine him walking beside me. I hear his laugh, or remember his stories – his crazy long stories. I walked into many churches in Rome and could picture him there with me – as he loved churches of all kinds. I see a danish or a pastry and I am drawn to it as he loved them and always brought them to me even though I didn’t like them! So many little things.
And that is what you miss. The little things. Of course, holidays and special occasions are sad when he is not around. But it is the little tiny things that I remember and I miss. The memories I have are sporadic, yet fill a lifetime: sitting on his shoulders drinking cream soda from a bottle at the Lambert’s cottage, running to my aid to remove a fish hook from my neck, walking through the camp sites at Higley Flow State Park, going to St Lawrence street, walking along the Lakeshore, watching him water the garden or mop the floors on his hands and knees, getting ice cream at Scoopies, swimming in the ocean in Maine or at the Beaurepaire swim club, hearing the floor creak above me as he does his morning work out, driving to the train station in the wee hours of the morning to get to school, watching him sleep on the stand at stake conference, listening to him bear his testimony every week, watching him load his plate with desserts, laughing at his ongoing stories about Tahiti, hearing him speak or sing (even better!) Tahitian, seeing him work on the cardboard table on his accounting course, editing his papers, reading his poetry, seeing him read his scriptures or kneel in prayer, wondering what time he’ll be back since he’d been gone for hours, seeing him wash dishes, attending girl’s camp with him, hearing his jokes, dancing with him when I was little, wrapping the presents for him that he had bought, being introduced to his colleagues, correcting his school tests, receiving father’s blessings, asking him questions about anything and him know the answers, Christmas messages, tickling his head when I was little, listening to Molly Malone, Peas Porridge Hot and My Bonnie (all songs I passedon to my kids) etc. etc. the list can go on.
It is the little things that we miss when someone is gone. To hear their voice, to smell them, to touch them, to see them in the distance, an embrace, a touch. But, I can still feel his presence and influence in my life. I have felt him during some of my saddest moments, and some of my best moments. He is still here. I see him sometimes in my dreams, I see him in my kids, and I feel his love and spririt all around. And I will see him again.
Love you Dad.