We’re starting to settle in to this new vibe of life. Some moments it feels like he’s away shooting a movie, and others you remember he’s just never coming home.
Today I was driving with Poppy and I asked her when she thinks of dad.
“All the time” was her response. She asked me what big life experience was going to be the hardest for me to have without him. Without missing a heart beat I respond with,
“Having my first child.” My dad always wanted to be a grandfather. He could have been a wonderful grandfather. We both started tearing up.
“He’ll be there. He’s going to know your child before you do.” I think of their spirits off wherever they are in whatever medium they are playing joyfully already.
“When do you miss him?” she asks me. When I’m driving and stuck in traffic, when I make his favorite meals, when I walk into his apartment everyday, when randoms songs play on the radio, when I close my eyes at night and he visits me in my dreams- all the time, but sometimes not at all.
She pointed out to me that kids in her generation are expected to live until there 90’s. That means she’ll have only have known our dad for about 10% of her life. It just doesn’t seem fair. I knew my dad as an adult. We were friends. He was one of my favorite people in the world.
She let me know that she wishes he didn’t die while she was in her early teens just because she was always mad at him. I let her know that dad would talk to me about those days and he was proud of her for finding her voice and standing up for herself. He never took it personally- he’d already raised two daughters and knew it wasn’t about him. He was good like that.
It hasn’t been that long, but it’s those moments when life happens and this all feels normal that worries me. I don’t want us to forget about him or have this just be the way it is. This is not supposed to be normal, but it’s our new normal. We’re just settling in.
Whatever amount of time with my dad each of us got- we were all lucky to have him as a father. Now it’s just a matter of keeping him alive, talking about him at moments, and settling in to our life without him.
When we got home we watched a scary movie and went to bed.