In Memory of My Dad – Year 2

It’s been two years since my Dad passed away. It’s strange to write that and read it back, but, here we are. Here’s a photo from my wedding (he’s on the right):

A family photo during a wedding. Includes the bride, groom, parents, and sibling/partner. They are standing in front of a lake with woods behind it.

The first year was very painful. I would miss him all the time, and lose sleep over replaying many intense memories from the last few weeks of his life. It was brutal, and at times it was hard to remember that the pain was there because of all the good I had from him and shared with him. The feelings overtook those things. Over time, those feelings and recurring memories became less frequent though.

The second year has been less painful. There are still those intense moments that occur, but they’re not as frequent and not quite as hard to cope with.

Nowadays, I often feel sad from small moments. I will hear a new song and think “Hey, Dad might really like to listen to this this!” and realize I can’t share that with him anymore. Another example was simply catching football on TV during Thanksgiving. My actual first casual thought was “I wonder if Dad’s watching right now.” Then the obvious returned to me, and that’s always tough.

On the other hand, I can really enjoy reliving old memories. From big trips and huge experiences, to small little day-to-day things and simple life lessons. I find enjoyment in them again.

The pain still exists and it sucks, but the pain is there because of those positive memories. I don’t believe that good and bad have to be 50/50 in a ying-yang kind of balance always, but I do believe that even the best things in life have sharp edges, many of which will be hit. So I have some degree of acceptance of that.

I don’t have any particular wisdom, knowledge, or tricks to impart from all this though. There’s no magic to reducing or coping or growing from death. Just processing, time, and reflection. And, naturally, find time to do what you enjoy, and spend as much time with those that you love as you can. For me, those memories are what’s most important.

Feel free to read more about him here. Miss you, Dad.