The thing is, like most families we've had our ups and downs over the years. Some of the downs were major. My relationship with my Dad hasn't always been the best. But at the end of the day he was my Dad, and you only ever get one of those right. He loved his grandchildren and had a very special relationship with each of them. We miss him; I keep thinking I'm fine and then out of the blue I'll stop in my tracks, a memory having just flashed into my mind. Or I remember that's he's no longer here. It's amazing how the mind plays tricks on us.. allowing us to forget temporarily. My eyes are sore, and my head has a permanent dull ache deep inside. I feel empty, I feel like life has changed, and not for the better...
It's my Dad's funeral this Friday and the reason I'm writing this blog is because my children and I have written a poem, and I'm going to try to read it out during the service. I don't know if I can do it, but I really want to. The humanist lady, Cath, who's taking the service for us says she'll take over if I falter.
It took for my Dad to die though, for us to write a poem about him, to actually think about what it was that made him special, made him different, and what he added to our lives. I want to tell him to his face, and I can't . How many of us take the people closest to us for granted, never expressing the emotions that really tell them how we feel? When we lose someone we love it's too late to tell them; so we need to tell everyone and anyone who is important to us, who means something, exactly that. NOW. That they are precious, that they are loved, that they are special to us, and why they are all of these things.
Don't leave it until it's too late.
The other day on the radio Buddy Holly came on, and I sang along, knowing every single word without having to think about it. My Dad exposed me to Buddy Holly, and Elvis and many other great singers, and for that I'd like to thank him too. He (and my mum) introduced the Lake District to me. I hated it when I was little. Hated having to walk up and down mountains, eating packed lunches in the rain and having to wee behind a tree. As an adult I can appreciate the beauty of the mountains, the colours, the height, the fresh air, and I love it. My Dad had a very loud, raucous laugh. When I was younger I found it embarrassing, when we were out in public it made me cringe when people looked round when he laughed. Now I'm glad he laughed so much, and found humour in so many things.
My Dad was in no pain at all in his last two weeks, for that I am grateful. All the people that he was close to made at least one trip to the hospital to see him before he died (we didn't know he was dying) including his grandchildren. He was so pleased to see them, and so very proud of them...
Wish me luck on Friday.