July 2020 will admittedly be a difficult month for me.
We lost Dad a year ago July 8th, and to be honest the reality still hasn’t really sunk in, even twelve months later. It seems at least once a week something happens that I wish I could tell him about, just to hear his laugh. He had a great laugh.
I was looking through some pictures on my phone the other day, and came across the one shown below. This is from November 13, 2015 – the day Rick and I got married. I believe this is the last picture Dad and I took together.
Although I miss him dearly, there is some measure of comfort in knowing he’s not in pain anymore; Dad had a lot of health problems that severely limited his mobility toward the end, and there was nothing he liked more than to be ‘on the go’.
As an example – It was April last year, I believe. He’d been in and out of the hospital, and called me one day and said, “Okay, I’m going to Vegas for a week, love you, I’ll see you when I get back.” I took that to mean that he’d been discharged and given a green light….
Within twenty-four hours his doctor’s office called looking for him, and that’s how we found out that he’d signed himself out of the hospital to go have fun. One of the treasures he left me while he was on that trip was a voice mail that still cracks me up every time I listen to it. He ended the message by singing ‘nah nah na-nah nah, I am retired’, rubbing it in that he could go whenever – and wherever – he darn well pleased, thank you very much.
Those mischievous and stubborn streaks were definitely passed down from him to me. But also other things, such as taking pride in your work, following your heart, and treating others with respect and courtesy. For those and so many other things, I will always, always be grateful. I love and miss you, Dad.