Welcome! This post has been revised from one I posted in 2009 on the anniversary of my dad’s graduation to eternity. Nothing has changed in how I feel, except that the memories and observations are richer with maturity and time. I hope you enjoy remembering him with me today.
Was it really just a year ago that i was at your bedside saying goodbye?
the dull throaty feeling is gone when I think about you, but it’s been replaced by a shadowy soft sadness that is always there in the background, like a whisper.
I think it’s what’s left of the imprint you’ve left on my heart and when I think about you, it’s like a scar, the pain is gone, but I still feel it and the memory is sweetly sad.
there have been so many countless moments when I’ve wanted to talk to you,
When I wanted you to just hold my hand again and mimi…oh daddy i miss you so
With you lie all the memories of my girlhood.
My mind is filled with visions of running through the dewy grass of your fresh-cut lawn, dappled sunshine under your grapevines, watching you eat a tomato like an apple, BBQ dinners on the red and white patio stones, walking at twilight, bike rides and soft ice cream cones from the Cone & Shake Shop…
The grassy beaches of Lake Erie when we were camping, sitting around the fire…
I miss the days of you me, Jenny and the “dinghy” at Rondeau
I miss your story telling, and how we’d always miss the punch lines because you’d already be laughing so hard that we didn’t understand you…
Hearing the explosion of your Ford each morning when you started it and knowing it scared all the neighbour kids
I miss your silly songs and even your lectures about Greece.
I’m thankful that you taught me how to cook and bake all those Tuesday nights when mom was at Bible Study, and I’m thankful for the hours in the pool
That you recorded all of our Christmases, that you would turn the oldies on and dance with mom in the kitchen… that you never turned down a hug or a walk around the creek
That you insisted that every holiday should be spent with family, and that cousins were as important at brothers and sisters…and that many times friends were family.
That every time someone comes over (and the door was always open) you ask them to sit down and if they’d like something to eat or drink…and that you always have to have something to offer them, and to never hold back giving your best.
I know that you’d just love getting to know Lucas, Max and Carter more each day,
especially since I see so many glimpses of you in them, their thirst for adventure, love of being outside, their feisty “know it all-ness”, their fascination with how things work, their big laughs, sense of wonder and inability to whisper and ability to “make a deal”…
(and oh how you’d love Elaina and the other grandkids that have showed up since…)
I wish that I could thank you again and again,
for giving me such a rich childhood and for raising me right
for driving home the values of respect, to love mom and my family, hard work, integrity, loyalty, forgiveness, laughter, faithfulness… and grace
Thank you for sharing your love of history, and politics, economics, Greece and gardening…for allowing us to see you grieve losing your own parents but also for celebrating the small and big things, really well…and for never giving up…on any of us.
and if I could go back and do anything over…
I would make sure that you were as much a part of my early adulthood as you were my early years…
I’d live more like I hope I am now,
with a painful awareness that each and every day is a gift, and that I should make the most of each moment and love the people in my life because here i am, and it’s already been 365 days, and it feels like I just said goodbye yesterday…
I’ll never stop loving you, and I’ll never forget you,
I will see you again, and until then, I know that as you see me from that “great cloud of witnesses” you are full of the Glory of the One who will help me run this race with endurance.
al my love, always