Someone asked me the other day if it felt like my Dad had been gone forever or if it felt like just the other day he passed.
I couldn’t answer.
The truth is, neither of those are true for me because it doesn’t feel real.
Until it does……….and then it hits me like a ton of bricks.
Like a punch in my stomach.
Then, there I am having to abandon my cart at Homeland grocery store because I’m crying so hard I can’t catch my breath. I leap into my car and cry tears I didn’t even know were there.
I cry tears and feel sadness because an old man asked me where the tomato juice is and then I remembered that my Dad will never get that old.
And then in that moment I wonder. I wonder so much….
What he’d think about Evie.
What he would be like as an old guy.
What did he wonder about?
What kind of relationship would we have as he got older. Would he live with me or one of my sisters? Would he cook us dinner? He loved to cook.
I question everything I did and mainly didn’t do and I wonder “why the hell Haley….Why didn’t you.”
This week is hard.
I recall everything about this week last year with such clarity. What I can tell you is that the day and the moment he took his last breath wasn’t the saddest part. I literally felt him leap out of this world and become free of pain. Each time I asked my Dad if he was scared he always answered no. I always made sure he wasn’t. I was so scared I couldn’t hardly remember to breath. I couldn’t imagine my life without him and here I am. I had so much to tell him and to do with him. I am still so scared to let go that I try to forget it’s real.
Grief doesn’t have a right or wrong response. A year later I haven’t learned anything about this process except for that.
As I go through my life I’ll wonder about what my life would be like with him. In that wonder I’ll do my best to honor him and remember he’d want what’s best and happiest for his girls.
Dad, I’m so so sorry you never got the chance to fill your own wonder and I won’t ever stop wondering for you.
I love you and I miss you. Today and forever.