Tomorrow marks the 33rd anniversary of my father’s passing. It’s always easy for me to remember how many years it has been since it’s always how old I am at the time. He passed away just two months after I was born.
I always felt a little sorry for myself – growing up without a dad. Nowadays, a lot of children don’t have fathers in their lives but
back then most people had a mom and a dad. I felt like I was missing out on
“dad” stuff. I imagined how awesome my dad was and how we would be living the most
cool life ever if only he was alive. As a parent now, I realize it
wasn’t me that anyone (including myself) should have ever felt bad for – it was
my dad and mom.
I can’t imagine having a pregnant wife and learning that I had Melanoma Skin Cancer. I can’t imagine battling through chemo and surgery during a time when I should be happily painting a nursery. I can’t imagine missing the birth of my child because I was in the hospital fighting for life. I can’t imagine knowing that I would miss my child’s first words, first steps, and every step after that. I can’t imagine knowing that I would be leaving behind my beloved wife with a two year old and a two month old to take care of on her own. It is all simply unimaginable yet it’s what he had to deal with.
As for my mother, I can’t imagine caring for a toddler, carrying a baby inside of me, and watching my husband die. I can’t imagine the sorrow and the fright of not knowing what my future holds. I can’t imagine knowing my husband would never walk through the door again. I can’t imagine knowing that I had to do it all on my own. I can’t imagine not getting my happily ever after.
The whole situation was really just horrible. It’s only now as an adult (and parent) that I truly recognize how remarkable they both were. I only wish they were here for me to tell them.
|A note my father wrote to my mother in college. She saved it and then passed it along to me.|