For those of you who don’t know, I lost my father at the age of 12. I will never forget that phone call I got the day he landed in the hospital. 3 days on life support. He was a vegetable and they decided to take him off life support because he wouldn’t be able to live life without a machine. I stood in the room and held his hands as I watched him take his last breathe. I don’t think there are words to describe that feeling of emptiness, that feeling that you just lost the man who is supposed to raise you and be there for you for the rest of your life. From here on out it was just my mom and I. From that moment on, my life would be drastically different.
1. Sports, dance, and extracurricular activities just don’t feel the same. The small moments, like your dad tossing the ball around with you and coaching you at practice are over. You feel jealous when you see the children with their fathers. Wishing you had your dad cheering you on and encouraging you to do your best.
2. Father daughter dances are downright heartbreaking, because as much as you would like to go, you know you can’t it just wouldn’t feel right.
3. Your first relationship and having your father’s approval. Your dad is supposed to make sure you picked the right person and scare them from dating you because he’s your protector.
4. The thought of Father’s day and holidays in general make you angry, you might find yourself in the store looking at cards and sit in your car and breakdown and cry because you just wish he was there to celebrate, but he’s not.
5. You cringe when people talk about their parents and hear them being ungrateful. Don’t complain about your parent’s in front of me, you’re lucky you even have them. You will get a mouthful from me about how life goes too quick and how I would give anything in the world to have him back. Appreciate them, they brought you into this world and they care about you, you don’t know what you got till it’s gone.
6. You think about the big moments in your life like graduation from high school and college, your first car, your license, moving into your own place, landing your first real job, your wedding. Who’s going to give you away at your wedding and walk you down the aisle? You don’t realize how big of an impact on your life your parents have, and in some way it makes you appreciate life, it makes you appreciate how far you have come.
7. No matter how long, no matter how many years go by, you will never stop hurting. You will breakdown down the line years after and find yourself upset wishing he was there. You just learn to live with the pain and be at peace with it. You will be stronger, and learn how valuable your parents in life truly are. You will have to learn things the hard way because you don’t have someone there to guide you and help you avoid mistakes before they happen.
8. It will change your outlook you have on life, it will teach you how precious every moment, every memory, everything. Because it will make you realize how in the blink of an eye everything can change. You have a new found appreciation for everything. And the little things that you complain about, don’t really seem so bad anymore because you’ve been through worse.
9. It will make you want to be the best parent and will make you want to give your children everything and be there for them always, because you know the impact of having a parent there for you.
10. Those pictures, home videos, all of those things you will cherish forever. They will bring back all the good memories and keep those great times in your head and you will talk about the stories and all the great times you had with family and friends. Hold onto those memories forever and pass them down to your kids eventually.
11. People will try to understand and say sorry, but it is never going to change anything. Sorry really doesn’t mean much to you anymore, but you say thank you anyway because you know no one who hasn’t lost a parent will never understand what you’re going through.
12. When you love, you love hard because you miss that love of a father and you want to share your love because you know what it is like to lose someone who means everything to you.
Just remember he’s up there looking down on you, proud of everything you have been through and overcome, he will always be there with you in spirit.