I don’t really question why or say I don’t understand why you’re gone… because I know, and I think that’s what hurts me the most. It’s not a mystery to me. It’s clear as day. I watched it all unfold over the years and can connect the dots with my mind. So, I’m sick of people saying that he wasn’t sick for that long and he didn’t suffer too much. Because if you truly knew my dad, you know that’s a lie. He’s been sick and suffering for a long time. And cancer aside, he’s been mentality sick with worries, fears of money and stress. Worries and fears so strong that a tumor was in his stomach. Bitterness so strong that cancer was in his bones. Stress so high that cancer was in his lymph nodes.
And I think deep down I blame myself a little because I could’ve done something about it, but I was so selfish. I am so selfish and care about my life too much. I care about meaningless things more than the health of my family and friends, and that’s awful. A man that cared so much about me and my health is literally gone, and I could’ve helped out. Maybe not saved his life, but at least prolonged it some. It’s a such an ugly truth to embrace, but it’s real and if I don’t embrace it in it’s fullness… well I might get sick, and I don’t ever intend to be sick.
So, what do I do with this thing called cancer? I’m not angry with it and I don’t hate it because I didn’t have the full experience a lot of people do, but I do hate the bitterness, worries, stress and fears that created it. I hate them so much. And I don’t hate my father for carrying around those things, but I hate them for having so much power in his life. I hate them so much and I hope they die… Seriously, I hope they die. I don’t know how you kill things like that, but I will find a way. Maybe it’s part of my mission in life to just keep those things dead in my life and in my families lives.
And I also can’t really wrap my head around the fact that he’s gone… but his body is 15 miles from my house under the ground. His breathe and soul aren’t here… so he’s not here, but technically this shell that allowed me to identify my father is still here. It’s weird. It’s strange. It feels so uncommon. I’ve never experienced death before. All of my grandparents are alive and I’ve never lost a friend, so this is like learning a foreign language or something. I just haven’t fully grasped death. And everyone tells me people grieve differently and that there’s no right way to do it… but I still feel like I need a guideline. It’s just so strange.
More than anything, I think I’m numb. A long with helping mom find paper work and wait on death certificates (which is so weird too), we have to finish a house. Which means I have to think about my dad all the time… and try my hardest to think like him, but how do you think like a man who was so gifted? Honestly, you don’t… unless God gives it to you… unless he gives you the wisdom to make decisions like dad and have that “eye.”
But still, in the midst of it all… I see this whole situation as a giant blessing. So many good things have already happened. So many good things happened before he died. I promised him a month ago that mom, Bridge and I would be here for him… because he was there for me when I faced weight problems and health issues, and he was there for Bridge through her eating disorder and he was there for mom when she was in rehab. So, I promised him we would be here for him to see him conquer cancer, but that didn’t happen…. And now, I wonder, how can I be there for him? Well, I can honor him… which is something I’ve never been good at. I missed that whole “honor your parents” commandment. I’m so terrible at it and ungrateful, but I am willing to learn about honor and be there for my dad like I promised. I’m willing to finish this house, help my mom and make sure my grandparents are taken care of by someone. Because I’m learning that honor means you do things you don’t want to do even when it’s challenging. You do it in the name of someone you love, respect and deeply care about because they would do the same for you… and my father definitely always honored me and Bridge.