People say it gets easier but I think that’s just because it seems like the comforting thing to say. In reality it doesn’t get easier, it just becomes the new normal. That new normal doesn’t hurt any less with each new day. In a way it hurts more as each new day is 24 more hours without you.
18 years ago was the worst day of my life. I’m certain I have said ‘this is the worst day’ multiple times since then but January 6, 1999 was the day my heart was broken beyond repair. Losing a parent is something that most people know they will eventually have to deal with but at 21, I wasn’t anywhere near ready to lose my dad.
My heart hurts when I think about everything he has missed. I can’t help but constantly wonder just how different my life would be if he was still with us today. As I approach the year where my dad has been gone for more of my life than he was in it, I find myself struggling to hold on to the memories I do have.
For as long as I can remember my dad wasn’t well but nothing could ever prepare me for a life without him before I really became my own person. I had always worried about him dying but I don’t think deep down that I ever truly believed that it would happen so soon.
There are tons of regrets as I think most people have. Why did we fight so much? Why didn’t I take more time to listen to his stories and get to know him? Why didn’t I ask more questions about what it was like when he was growing up? I guess I always thought those things would come over time when I was grown up. And now I don’t have the chance to have those conversations or ask those questions.
My dad was funny and quiet…and he loved to work. I see so many things in me that remind me of him, even down to having his wrists. I know, weird comparison but for some reason I always noticed his wrists when we would hold the steering wheel while driving and often I look at mine and flashback to his. He loved orange popsicles, he used to go to Avondale and buy a freezer full so he didn’t have to have those extra colours that came in the boxes at the grocery stores. He loved dunking Dad’s oatmeal cookies into his tea. He played the bagpipes and when I was younger I would have given anything for that noise to stop…and now I would give anything to be able to hear him play again. His favourite beer was Rickard’s Red. I’ll always remember the Kelsey’s meals where he would come home with the teal napkins because he would tuck them into his belt and then walk out with them…we ended up with a whole drawer full of them.
It’s weird how no matter how many people tell us to cherish the time we have with someone, we never seem to get it. And people are gone from our lives much sooner than we are ready and we haven’t asked all the questions or spent more time with the people in our lives.
I miss him everyday, more than I ever thought was possible. I try my best to be thankful that I had him in my world for the time that I did but it still wasn’t enough. I guess there really isn’t ever ‘enough’ time with someone but I do feel like I deserved him for longer.
I’m not religious and not so sure I believe in heaven but I have to think that he’s in a better place where he isn’t in pain and isn’t suffering anymore. A place with unlimited orange popsicles, bottomless Rickard’s Red and the freedom to pipe away at anytime.
I will always miss you, it will always hurt but I will always be your little girl.
Hugs from a girl, trying to find her place in this world xoxxox