Monday, August 16, 2010

Taking a moment...

I haven't posted in a while now, and before I resume with normal-life kind of stories, I feel the need to take a moment and write this (more for myself than anything)...

As I'm sure everyone who reads this blog knows by now, my dad passed away a month ago after a battle with cancer. I thank all of our friends and family from the bottom of my heart for all of the amazing support we've gotten in the past month; without you this would have been impossible to face. I feel so fortunate to have you in my life.

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I've been trying to decide if/what I want to write here about the awesome man my dad was and what it's been like to lose him. I realize it's not exactly happy blog material, but as I've been chronicling all the major events of my life over the past year and a half, it felt wrong to move on with the happy, normal posts without acknowledging this.

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I shared at his memorial picnic what I wanted everyone to know and remember about my dad, and I'll re-share here a story I told then. Words don't really work for this kind of thing, but I guess it's the best I can do to try to explain what he meant to me.

I’ve been told the story of my birth many times throughout the course of my life. I hear it was a little bit rough- my mom had a long labor, and when I finally was born there were complications and I was immediately whisked away by the doctors to be worked on: poked, prodded, and all kinds of not-fun stuff. When things finally settled down and it was clear that I was going to be ok, it was time for the nurses to take me to the nursery for the night so my parents could get some much-needed sleep. Well, my dad didn’t like the idea of this brand new little life spending her first night in the world in a cold, impersonal hospital crib all alone, and instead of resting and recuperating after the whole slightly traumatic ordeal like he could have done, he sat up the entire night, hour after hour, holding me in his arms and doing all that he could to show me that the world was a safe, warm, happy place full of love and human connection. It was vitally important to him to start me out with the best possible introduction to this life, and he did that just by being there that night and sharing with me all of his empathy, compassion, and thoughtful humanity.

On the first day of my life, my dad was already giving me the best that any child could hope for. At my most vulnerable, most fragile state of being, he was doing everything he could to keep me feeling loved, safe, and wanted. What more could anyone ever ask of a parent? I obviously don’t remember that day, but I feel it. I’ve always felt the things he began giving me that day, and I’ll keep feeling them for the rest of my life.

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I love you Dad, and I miss you.


Michelle said...

That was so beautiful Patty. You have been in my thoughts everyday.

Marianne said...

Oh, Patty. What a beautiful story that was. I cried real tears for you when I found out he passed, and I am again this morning. Much love to you.

Angie said...

that was absolutely beautiful, i can't help but put myself in my friends shoes when they lose a parent and cry & hurt right alongside with them. You are such a strong woman and are handling all of this with so much stride. I'll continue to think of you and pray that you continue to handle this the way you have been.
lot and lots of hugs to you <3

andrea said...

Beautiful words Patty. And an incredible photo. That picture brought tears to my eyes. Wishing you lots of strength and peace.

LizzyB said...

You found the perfect words to write. Wish I could have heard them in person. Uncle Harold is in my prayers at night. Love you - Liz

Stefanie K. said...

Beautiful, Patty. I still think of you and your family so often. Sending you lots of love.