a letter to my dad

A horrific traumatic day.
The shock and numbness.
The sick feeling in the pit of your stomach.
The difficulty returning to any sense of normality.
The feeling of living in a weird twilight zone.

As time goes on the memories of that horrible day have thankfully faded and great memories of you have taken their place. We all have our own but mine include annual holidays at Whitby Folk week, mad weekends away at Vic and Tots and Christmas days after church.

We’ve all lost so much –
I never really got chance to get to know you like I should have or I would have liked to. At 16 I was so wrapped up in myself. There are so many times that I could have done with your advice or needed a simple hug off my dad.
Our kids have missed out on a grandad and our partners a father-in-law … they would have loved you like we do.
I would love for you to just to still be here… as a comforting, loving presence in all our lives.

It’s also so sad that you have missed out on so much… To see us grow up and make our mistakes, our successes and our way in the world. To get to know our partners and your grand children. Birthdays, weddings, christmases, parties, holidays, the normality of day to day life.To continue on your own journey and to journey along side us through life.

But time does move on and to a point, time does heal. Nowadays I find it easier to say your name without getting choked, to look at pictures of you and to be thankful for the time we did have. I think about you often and remember you with love and a glad heart.

In 25 years, we have all moved up a generation and can now look at our own young ones with love and pride, knowing how much you would have loved them and sometimes we can catch glimpses of you in them! Our love for you goes on as strong as ever and we can celebrate and be grateful for your life because you are still part of us all.

I am sure that one day we will meet again, face to face, what a day that will be! But until then please keep watching and smiling over us.

And in the words of the Irish blessing…

May the road rise to meet you.
May the wind be always at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face.
May the rains fall soft upon your fields and until we meet again,
May the Lord hold you in the palm of His hand.