My Father

October 5, 2016

Typically, this blog has stuff related to and involving my writing. I try to keep my personal life to myself, but there are plenty of times that bleeds into my writing life. For once, I’m not bitching about my attempts to get published, or how frustrated I am with the system. It’s a blog that I never wanted to write, and something I never wanted to talk about, but I have to.

My father died on Monday morning.

It’s such a strange feeling. He was 73, and had been in failing health for several years. For so long, I’d always somehow expected that he might not pull through, his next trip to the hospital will be his last, and all of that negativity. I hate thinking like that, but I had to be realistic. I didn’t want to deny it when he did go, and I didn’t want to be shocked.

Still, I wish he was still here. If only we had one more year with him, one more Christmas, one more summer of bar-b-ques and sitting around the fire, one more year of watching baseball games and talking about work and jobs and people we know, places we’ve been, movies we loved, restaurants we couldn’t stand, going to the park, bird watching, looking at trains, going out for big family lunches and just sitting at the dinner table feeling relaxed and happy. I cherished those moments, and I’ll never forget them.

He instilled a work ethic in me that I’ve struggled to maintain my entire life. Work hard, earn what I deserve, and provide for myself and others. He was gracious enough to provide me a home for as long as I needed one, and even made sure I knew that any time I needed, I was welcome to come back. He gave me advice for every aspect of my life, no matter how simple or ridiculous. Always one to help, he knew when to be sympathetic to problems, and realistic with solutions.

I feel like many of my best attributes are because of him. But then, there is much negativity as well. Many of my most cynical behaviors come from him, someone who could see the flaws in everything, someone who knew what was smart and what would work, and never had a problem pointing those things (or lack thereof) out to anyone who listened.

Never one to support my desire to be a writer, he had no issue putting it down. He did, however, recognize that it was something I loved, something that made me happy, and something that kept me going. When I graduated college, he shook my hand and told me he was happy for me, something he never had the chance to do with my brother or sister (until recently).

There’s so much more to say. So much that I could write about for a long, long time. As of now, I can say that I know I’ll miss him, and it’s just now sinking in that he isn’t coming home. Instead of worrying about the lack of a person in our lives, I’ll remember all the times he was there, and cherish every minute of it.

I’ll miss you, Dad, but thanks a lot for everything.

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