An Open Letter to My Dad in Heaven
I woke up this morning feeling different than I ever have in my entire life. There isn’t even an adjective that could adequately describe it. I should be able to use a word I’ve used before because I know the pain of loss. But, just as people can’t truly be compared, neither can any loss.
I bounce back and forth from one moment feeling relief that you are not suffering and are in a better place, to the next where there is the heart-wrenching realization that you are never coming back.
I can’t believe you’re gone. It still seems so unreal.
But, it is real.
I can’t pick up the phone and call you. I can’t hear your voice. I can’t stop in to visit. I can’t see you.
I’m heart broken because I love you more than you could have ever known. There were two or three times over the years where I either wrote in a card or told you how much I appreciated who you were in my life, but no words could have ever expressed what you meant to me.
You were the first man I ever loved. You were the strong and silent presence in my childhood and as I was growing up. You became my friend as I got older and went through many hard times with me in my adult life, while still being the strong voice of reason that never sugar coated anything. You were one that I could always count on to give it to me straight, whether I wanted to hear it or not. You were the constant in a life filled with chaos, tragedy, and pain.
You were the strong example of what a man should be. Not only for me, but for my kids who didn’t have that in their life when they lost their own Dad so young. They lost so much on top of losing him and although they might not have seen you every single day, they knew you were there.
That’s what real love is.
I will never be able to fully express what that has meant to me; to all of us.
You are loved and will be so incredibly missed.
Thank you for loving me.
Thank you for being my Dad.
Thank you for being you.