It's hard to describe my dad really with words. He loved to tell a good joke. He saw only good in others. He was a lover of life. He loved people almost more than anyone I know. He loved to travel - but more so he loved to meet people in his travels because he was a lover of souls. Some day when I grow up, I hope to be more like him than I already am.
How are we doing? I'm not sure. Sometimes I feel numb. Sometimes I smile when I think of something he did. Sometimes I forget he's gone. Sometimes I feel a twinge of remorse. Sometimes I'm ready to pick up my phone and text him a question. Sometimes waves of sadness roll and I let the tears fall. Time will heal. We know it does. But for now it is fresh and new and we will navigate through a huge world of adjusting - most of all for my dear mother who has lost her friend, partner, soul-mate and husband of 57-years.
My mom will not be pleased that I am sharing this, but I cannot not say it. She was simply remarkable through the journey she and my dad went on. She was an attentive care-giver. She put away any selfish thought for the eight weeks he was ill and spent her time, energy and emotion all for his care. She loved him 'til death did them part. I overheard her say she does not regret every moment she spent in caring for him.
The times I spent sitting on the sofa with my ailing dad by my side visiting with me will never-ever be forgotten. There were rich times with my siblings and other family members. They were priceless. The final words he said to me three days before he died were 'It's complicated'. I'm not sure exactly what he was talking about, but it kind of sums up life in a way.
I spent a fair amount of time with my parents through the past eight weeks. I was in awe really at how a disease can rob you of physical and eventually mental ability. It seemed that week by week there were 'lasts' that happened. There was the last time he was able to mow his lawn. There was the last time he made mom breakfast. There was the last time he got to meeting. There was the last time he went outside. There was the last time he went to the basement. There was the last time he could walk without assistance. There was the last time that he sat in the living room. There was the last time that he slept in their bed. And there was the last time that he took a breath.
So what is the first after many lasts? It simply the fact that on June 1st it was the first time I woke up without a dad. It was the first time in my 52-years that I didn't have him. Yes, we have been blessed for having him this long. But it is an adjustment and with time it will be better understood.
p.s. stay tuned. I may be sitting more often in the blogging chair in the future. I miss you all!