birthdays, Blog, Family, father

I Will Never Get Over Losing My Dad

Day 215

DaddyToday would be my father’s 92nd birthday. At midnight last night, he would have been sitting on the side of the bed singing “Happy Birthday to Me”. He never lost his childhood spirit and that is something I try to emulate.

My Dad could be a tough cookie. He had his rowdy days, he wasn’t always a good husband and according to my siblings, he was not always a good father. I realize all of that about him, but he was my dad and I loved him more than I can adequately express.

He had such a tender and sentimental side, yet he could be so harsh at times. I only remember three times in my life I was at odds with him. We did not always see eye-to-eye, yet in the worst times of my life, he was there for me. He did not judge me or say I told you so although he well could have. He just loved me and helped me find my way.

On his birthday, I think I miss him a lot more than other days. He was such a kid at heart. I miss our chats and our birthday calls and wish so much I could talk to him again. Losing my mom at 19 was so hard and if my dad and I had allowed time or space or disagreements to come between us, I think my life may have taken an unhealthy turn.

DadI will never get over losing my dad. I do not live in grief any longer but the missing never goes away. The longing for that one last hug is an ache I will always carry. But on this day, I cannot be sad. I can only smile and think about how much he loved his birthday and how much we loved each other.

He would be ecstatic to see my six grandchildren (and six of his great-grandchildren.) He has been such a role model for me in what it means to be a grandmother. My children adored him because he always made them feel special and he always had time for them. He talked to them like they were people. He loved them no matter what.

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Dad, I miss you — especially today. I am so thankful for the relationship we had because I know many, many people who were not so fortunate. The love and respect I have for you has continued to grow even after your passing.

Happy Birthday, Daddy. I love you always. I am living my life with joy and I hope you realized how very much your love would continue to shape the course of my life.

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20 thoughts on “I Will Never Get Over Losing My Dad”

  1. That is a beautiful tribute to your dad, and I can understand your feelings for him totally. You know, I have known a number of families who have lost a father or mother later in life, and I helped them come up with some meaningful ways to celebrate those lives. One is that if someone in your family can quilt, you can take any clothing that might be left, and make a memory quilt that the family can share and enjoy. Another is to give each person a piece of muslin ironed to a piece of wax paper and also supply each person in the family a red permanent pen, and have them all write their memories. I think it will be something that will help all of you to remember all the good things about your dad, the funny things, and things you all can share. Just a thought, but things like that have a way to bring people close and to give someone who is gone a long memory for those who are left. That was a lovely tribute, and it is very inspiring to read. Thank you very kindly.

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    1. Thank you, Anne. Fortunately, he was bigger than life and hard to forget, so remembering him is not difficult. We do have a family quilt which I love.

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  2. You were SO lucky to have had the loving experiences with your Dad ( and,Mom too)
    From your descriptions I can see where all your wonderful traits come from. Must have been wonderful to get that kind of love from your parents. Of course, nobody is perfect and there are always bumps in the road, but you had something very special! 💜

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  3. Today is my bday, too (May 7), and, like you, I had a father who was tough, gruff and gentle, wrapped in a wonderful body of humanity. He’s been gone since ‘81 but I think of him often, and miss him, my hero. Now, my daughter writes wonderful notes to me about being a good dad. My son does, as well. It’s nice to know that, as a father, I’ve had a positive effect in their lives, as your dad did for you. I loved this story. Thank you for expressing it so well.

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    1. Happy Birthday! Thank you for taking the time to read and comment. I love the phrase “wrapped in a wonderful body of humanity” for that expresses so well the character of my dad. We need good dads in this world. You must be proud to know you are one.

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  4. Aw, hugs to you – it is hard to lose a parent, no matter what age you are. You’re right, you never stop missing them. Your thoughts about how proud he’d be of you and your family are heartwarming. It is nice to read you were able to find joy in your memories, too. xx

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  5. That’s a wonderful tribute to your dad, Maggie. The best parts of his spirit live on in you and through you to your children and grandchildren. I think he would be enjoying a happy birthday today.

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I appreciate those who read and enjoy your thoughtful comments.

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