The past year really hasn't been much different from the last 10 years. After my parents divorce, I really didn't see my dad that often. He had chosen a different life over that of his familys'. I really only saw him about once a year; sometimes not that often. However, since last November 8, I have thought of my dad almost every day.
Maybe because he was with us when he passed away.
We opened up our home to care for him the last weeks of his life. During this time, I got to know him more than I ever had. For those who knew him, you know he was not a man of many words. So few words, I spend much of my life wondering if he loved me. Some in this situation would have turned to other men, drugs, sex, or other dangerous ways to find love, but I was able to get through these tough years by realizing that I would know and experience love from the ultimate father... God.... Abba. Not to say there was not a deep hurt by the lack of relationship with my earthly father. I think there are issues that I still haven't completely dealt with. I no longer question my dad's love for me. We made peace in the best way we could. He told me he loved me and that he was proud of me. Isn't that what every child wants to know?
Even though the circumstances were not ideal, I am so thankful that we were able to give my dad a comfortable place and a loving home to spend his last days. He had a chance to see his granddaughter everyday. I think this probably brightened his spirits more than anything else. He was so proud of her. I was also able to see my husband in a way that I had never seen him. The hospice nurses joked with him about how good of a "nurse" he was! He took care of dad, physically, in ways that I had a hard time doing.
Dad and Elizabeth June 2009
I love you dad. You are missed.