Feelings on Father’s Day

How am I doing this year?
I’ve been thinking about Dad extra amounts this week. More has reminded me of him. I’ve felt quieter and more subdued. I’ve been nervous about how today would be. 

This morning I’m trying to keep busy, but also keep in mind the knowledge that I can still celebrate Fathers Day. I have a wonderful Dad, that in twenty six years with me, gave me a wonderful childhood, advice and so much love. 

Looking forward, this time next year, we will be celebrating Father’s Day in a different way. We will be parents, caring for our gorgeous little boy or girl. A child far less fortunate than myself, in regards to parenting. Jim will step into that role. He will be wonderful. He is so much like my own Dad. 

Please don’t feel sorry for me, or any other grieving children today. Just promise me you will spend time with your own Dad’s while you still have the chance.

Seeing you.

I dreamed about you last night.

It was only a fleeting visit. 

You held me. You were well and strong again. You smelled like you again. 

Even in my dream I knew you shouldn’t really be here.

I breathed you in and savoured the moment. 

I told you off, and reminded you what you had said to us. You shouldn’t be here, worrying about us, you should be resting.

You smiled.

You told me you loved me and that I should read your journal entries to remind me of it.

Even in my dream you help me. EditIt’s good advice. It’s a way I have to hear your voice. I think I’ll read them tonight. 

Thanks Dad. 

You are welcome to invade my dreams anytime.

Our new normal.

Everything is slipping back to normal this week, well our new normal anyway.

We all started back at work or school.

We are all being very brave.

My wounds of the last fortnight are fading and new aches are taking their place.

I felt comfort that my poorly Father was taken from us.

But now, over two weeks on, I’m remembering the Dad I had before all of this. I don’t feel comfort that he’s gone.

He was awesome.

He was fun and wise and nice to have around.

He was energetic and encouraging.

The house is quieter without his voice in it.

We are still sitting all together to eat. Making jokes and conversation. We are still playing board games and watching films.

But it all feels different.

It is all different.

Our new different normal.

We will get used to this, I know we will.

I know these aches will fade and bruises will appear in their place.

Thank you for looking out for us still. This week is going to be one of our hardest yet,

Getting used to a new different normal that we didn’t ask for.

Trying to be thankful, strong and happy in a future, this time last year we wouldn’t have imagined possible.

Back to reality.

I start back at work tomorrow. Back to reality. I’m worried. 

Worried I can’t do it, and worried if I can.

 I’m worried people will want to talk to me and hug me and tell me I’m doing great. 

I’m worried people will have their own problems and not worry about me at all. 

I’m worried I won’t care about the little things anymore, and I’m worried they will matter too much. 

I’m worried people will think I’m doing better than I am.

I’m worried people will put demands on me, I’m worried people won’t treat me the same as the others.

I can’t win. 

And you can’t help me,

Because i’m making it impossible for anyone to do the right thing for me, because every eventuality will be hard. 

The fact is it all will be hard. No matter how I cope, no matter what people say or do or how they treat me, it’s going to be really hard.  

So, if you see me tomorrow, just smile. No more. That will help.

 It lets me know that you know. 

It lets me know you care.

If you don’t see me tomorrow, please think of us all. Please pray that we have strength, patience, energy and courage.

Thank you so much for caring. 

Thank you so much for thinking of us, the cards, the flowers, the dinners and everything. 

You guys are the best.

Grief

I lost my Father eight days ago. 

I do not feel how I thought I would feel and am not doing what I thought I would do. 

Either the sadness of it all hasn’t hit me yet, or I am peaceful because my Dad was peaceful.

Of course I am hoping for the latter.

My life is changed, but it is not anger and hate I feel. 

I think I was most angry, confused and upset when my Dad was first diagnosed. I was shocked and there were so many unanswerable questions;

Will my Dad be pain free?

Will my Mum be able to cope? 

Will Dad see Easter? 

Will everybody get to see him that wants to?

Will my Dad cope with chemo?

Will my Dad be okay with this?

It brings me pride and peace to tell you the answers to all of the above uncertainties are a big fat yes. 

The fact is he coped amazingly and now so are we. 

I don’t know if I will continue feeling this way, but I am pleased I am feeling it today. 

Watching him fade away from us was far from easy, but it gave us time to come to terms with what was happening in our family. 

I still feel thankful and blessed that it all happened in this way, and am still searching for why we deserve such peace, when others suffer so. 

Maybe there is no answer.

There are some new feelings I have been feeling this week;

I am feeling impatient with people’s dramatised everyday and mundane problems. I honestly don’t care, it doesn’t matter. I can’t bring myself to even pretend to care.

I am also feeling nervous for Dad’s funeral, seeing all of those dispairing faces.

On paper the funeral looks lovely, ‘a celebration’, a perfect tribute for such a Man.

If you wish to attend it will be held on Friday 2nd September at Christ Church Braintree, London Road at 3:00pm. 

I am hoping you will bring smiles, memories and cake.

I know he would be proud how we’re doing. All this has brought us even closer and given us a new perspective on life and living. It’s what he would want to come out of all this.

I do not know how I am going to feel next week or next year, but this is how I am feeling now. 

I know there is no right or wrong way to manage this, I am just doing by my best. I am focusing on what made Dad peaceful and sharing the message to others.

A true Father, to more than just us.

It only feels right to sort out my thoughts in the same way I have throughout all of this.

I am humbled, even through confusion and fatigue, my Dad spoke only to thank and support others in his last words.

He lived his life to serve God and show love to all those around him. He did this until the end.

The amazing letters, cards, emails and texts have been overwhelming these last few months. They all speak of a man who supported them, showed uninhibited love and a devotion in God’s work. 

These words are truly inspiring to me and I am sure anyone who reads them. It is clear he has not wasted a day of his life wanting materialistic or selfish desires, but has only lived for the benefit and happiness of others. 

A true father, to more than just us. 

This is his legacy.

I do not feel anger nor do I feel discouraged in faith. My Dad knew a miracle was at work in him. Prayers were answered. He served well, the seeds were sown, his work here was done.

I feel completely humbled that my Dad was blessed with such a peaceful departure from this life and I am ever so proud of him and everything he has achieved. 

Thank you God.

Thank you for choosing me to be his daughter.

 Thank you for an incredibly devoted and loving Mother who is equally as devoted to serve. Who is stronger than she yet knows and more able than she could believe. 

Thank you for allowing me three wonderful siblings that share this journey with me. That are all sowing seeds of love and kindness to others, following Dad’s footsteps. 

Thank you for helping me find my soul mate early in life, so he could equally know and love my Dad as I do. 

And finally, thank you for friends and family, showing their love, gratitude and support in so many ways.

It only feels right to leave with scripture.

Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.

Matthew 5:9 | NIV

Sitting down, Jesus called the Twelve and said, “Anyone who wants to be first must be the very last, and the servant of all.”

Mark 9:35 | NIV

I hope all that knew Dad find comfort and peace, and will each continue his work, planting seeds of kindness and love. 

Father’s Day

So lots of people are asking how we are, and I am sure many more are wanting to ask but don’t know if they should. So here is a little update for you all…

 

When people ask ‘So, how’s your Dad?’ I don’t really know what to say.

The thing is I don’t really know the answer.

Last Friday, after tests, the Doctors said his liver was in a bad way and the chemo was no longer helping. As you can imagine this was a massive blow to our entire family. They warned us of what signs to look out for and told us what we should expect. It wasn’t good news.

This was my wake up call.

I obviously hadn’t forgotten all of this was happening, but the dust had settled on it all  I suppose. I described it to my Dad as if I was walking along a path, living my life with a massive shadow hovering over me. The shadow was his cancer. I knew it was there, but if I didn’t look back I could forget how huge it was. I’ve lived my life in this way for weeks now. Hearing what the doctors had to say, on that Friday, made me face it all. I turned around and faced the shadow. The shadow was far larger and far closer than when I had last turned my head. It scared me. It stopped me in my tracks and forced me to look.

I knew then that I needed to stop. Stop turning away. Stop living my life like normal, just for a bit. I needed time to face up to this massive shadow in my life. I needed time to take it in.

I didn’t go to work on Monday.

Or Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday.

These days went slowly.

 

But I had time. Time to think, remember and be there.

 

I enjoyed having time to ‘pop in’ to my parents house, help out and distract them. But four days was enough. It started to be counter productive, staring behind me all of the time.

 

By Friday I was ready, to start on my journey again. On the path that is normal life.

 

And to answer your question….my Dad’s alright you know, he is our walking miracle.

 

Still no pain killers

Still eating well

Still socialising

Still smiling

Still got cancer

 

and that’s life as we know it. Our new normal.

 

Thank you for caring and asking and not asking.

You lot are wonderful.

Happy Father’s Day.