So, today is January 23. Hard to believe, but as of 11:17am this morning it has been 17 years since my Dad passed away. He died young at age 58 – I was 34. Not ready to lose a Dad, but it was a bittersweet time.
Through the years we bumped heads a lot. A LOT. I’m sure that my Dad loved me in his own way, but not being shown love by his parents (or family for that matter), it was hard to show love to others. Don’t get me wrong, though my childhood had some rough moments, it also had some great moments as well.
In 1988, my dad had another motorcycle accident–one that took his life 3 times on the ER table that night, before the 4th defibrillation brought him back. From 1988 to his death in 1994, I saw him go downhill both emotionally and physically as his life sort of crumbled around him. So when his Mother died December 6, 1993 he just basically gave up. He had a bad heart and blood pressure through the roof that was not managed with meds. On his birthday on January 7, 1994 – I begged him to let me take him to the hospital after we had taken him to dinner, but he said…”Nah, I’m sure I just ate too much – the steak was just too damn good.” Who would have guessed that 16 days later (and 6 weeks, 6 days after his Mother) his heart would just blow out. He passed away in a greasy spoon diner in Akron almost immediately that morning. Which, after the hell he went through after the motorcycle accident, it was the best way to go I guess.
But I’m not the only one remembering a loved one today. One of my long-time dear friends is also remembering her brother who passed away on January 23rd but a year before my Dad. So, I think and pray for her as well as she misses her brother.
But….this is not meant to be a sad post as I have chosen to remember my Dad today by not remembering the hurtful things sad or done. Instead, I’ve chosen to remember the things that we laughed about through the 34 years I had with him. Like one of my all time favorite things to laugh at my Dad about (and actually then by laughing with him as I got him to laugh) was to watch him watch the old westerns or Lassie. Yup, Yup–it’s only a matter of time before my Dad is CHOKING back the tears for the old horses or for the perils that Lassie would be in. Oh, I truly have no idea what the story line was because I was watching him!!! Once the lip would begin to quiver – I was on the floor rolling and howling. My Dad would usually throw a pillow and tell me to shut up, but I’m sorry – I was gone! Or how about the time that I realized that the garden hose with ice cold water sprayed through the window into the shower while he was showering would garner such a barrage of language. Of course after FIRST the loud screech that would bring my Mom into the bathroom thinking something was wrong. At this point, I realized why bicycles were created so you could get the heck outta Dodge before he could dry, dress and come outside. Yeah, I know I seem to be a sick individual! Hehehehehehe!!
So, if by chance you are sad at the thought of your absent loved one today may I please suggest that instead of “missing” him or her that you “remember” them by remembering a time you laughed with them. It does heal the heart if only a little bit each time, but oh so worth it.
I think I’ll have to end here….I’ve been chucking enough at some of the thoughts that have come to me, I may need to go down the hall to the little room down there! And to my dear friend – may you think of some funny things you shared with Jeff! Love you.
…and that’s all I have to say about that!