As yesterday passed I looked at the date on a number of occasions: 5/28/2014. While signing papers, following up on emails, flipping through my planner, checking on documents. What didn’t occur to me was that it was my late dad’s birthday. It’s very strange that I hadn’t taken note of this or grieved not being able to give him a warm hug and cut him a slice of his favorite German chocolate cake. He was never one for making a fuss for his birthday, ever, so I suppose my lack of remembrance would have been fitting. It did make me question though, has almost five years of him being out of my daily life changed the way I miss him?
I have mourned his loss, in varying stages, steps, and with wavering strength over the past four and a half years since he passed. It has been a difficult, strange, confusing time on many days and to have such a vital, integral part of my life gone has been a long road of emotional ups and downs.
Recently there have been some deaths, both young and old, that have taken place in the families and friend’s lives around me. I feel for those left behind to lament for them so strongly, for the sensations of anguish and heartache that they will feel and the years it will take for their lives to return to anything of a semblance of normal. What I can say is that, apparently, things do start to feel somewhat normal. It make take two years, five years, or twenty years- I cannot say.
What I can see is that things are changing for me; that my brilliant, warm, and pillar of strength that was father was and is would be extraordinarily happy for me. For my state of mind, my happiness, and my ability to move forward- even when lacking the man who was most important in my life for twenty years. There are still songs, movies, books, even quotes that make tears fall when I come across them- but what beautiful memories to have, and even with him gone, know that these are things that are instilled within me- that will not die until I do- and that I am beyond blessed to have had such a wonderful man to call my father. While these nerves may not be struck as often and as strongly, I can say that even with five years of his absence there are gaps that will never be filled and that I am not done grieiving. I don’t know if I ever will, and that’s okay. I never want to lose the heartache over not having him there to walk me down the aisle, to speak to when I need advice, to celebrate Father’s Day with, to act as an example of what a truly magnetic, caring father is.
Happy birthday, Dad. I love you.
And friends in the States who loved and knew him well? Eat Taco Bell for him today. It’s what he wanted for lunch the day he died (probably because he didn’t know it would be his last meal), but my mom decided a nice little café would fare better. Mother knows best.