death · grief · relationship

Smelling the Roses


I feel jumbled on the inside. Frustrated every time I’m driving to work early in the morning and I want to call dad…. And I can’t. I just want to tell him good morning and I love him like I did every morning…. And I can’t…. And it sucks.

Then there are those moments when mom texts me from dads phone…. And I’m in the middle of something, see his name and get instantly disappointed….. Knowing it’s not him. It’ll never be him again. And then I kind of get mad at mom for sending a message from his phone in the first place…. Like did she really have to do that?

And I’m not mad at her. Simply mad at the situation because it sucks. It sucks that he’s not here anymore and life is moving forward. Every day I live is another day in further from him and all the moments I’ve had with him.

And it still sucks to feel like I’m kind of orphaned…. Then there’s the whole being concerned about mom and her health. I want her to be happy and live for a long time. Honestly, I can’t afford to loose another parent at all. Not now. Not while life is so young and fresh.

Since I had those thoughts… Those thoughts of life being an illusion and all of us being on autopilot… Well I can’t get them out of my mind. And then the loss of dad doesn’t help either.

I really believe God gave me this realization about life being an illusion so that I can begin to live in the moment more often… Hopefully one day I’ll live there all the time.

Last night mom said Bridge and I basically get a fresh start at life too. With such an absence from all of our lives, it makes more room for so much growth…. So many gaps need to be filled with new life. And I don’t know who or what will fill them. Like I said before, no one will ever completely fill the void of being fatherless.

And I suppose my new normal will continue to become what it is: life without Chris Winder’s presence. Life without a man that cared so much about me. That loved me unconditionally like all fathers should and that was one of my very best friends.

Then of course I have those moments when I just want to ignore that this even happened….. Pretend it’s a huge joke and the nightmare is over… That we can go back to reality now… Then again, this is reality. My new reality.

And life is so good. Really it is. I’m so blessed and so fortunate… And I’m overall extremely happy… So it sucks that I have to be all of these things without my dad here.

It’s funny and absolutely obnoxious that I complain about how much life sucks without dad. I mean….. Life could be so much worse.

When I moved to Cali in January, I took a little trip down skid row… Needing to work on my selflessness…. And then I began to realize that I could’ve been born homeless. My soul could’ve been placed in another life… A life of someone who is just happy to be alive…. But I get to be Amanda Winder.

And I am so blessed it’s a handful at times. Sometimes I have to step back and really take it all in for what it’s worth. Really relish in this life and moment. Because it could be so much worse. But really….. Just being here, alive and breathing is a blessing.

But we complain so much about what we don’t have…. Rather than accepting and acknowledging what we do have and how amazing it truly is.

I started taking yoga a few months ago and realized that just to be able to breathe is a blessing. I mean…. Really it’s a blessing. And I can’t explain why or given a reason for it…. But I feel blessed to be able to feel and be alive… Just smelling the fresh air helps me realize that I should be here… In this moment with everything that it encompasses.

And I suppose dad realizes all of these things now. If you believe like I do… Then you believe that Heaven is real and we gain complete knowledge and understanding of life when we get there… Or at least whatever God is willing to give us… So I’m sure he’s aware of how amazing it was to live here, on this planet we all earth.

So I guess once again, death is making me grateful to be alive. This thing that surrounds absence is causing me to appreciate every moment. To truly and whole-heartily stop and smell the roses….. Because they’ll be gone before I will.

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