March 31st I woke up to a nightmare. My father passed away. In the middle of the night, at work, of a heart attack. I couldn’t believe it or understand it. And even two weeks later I’m still in disbelief. I’m trying hard to finalize things, like his headstone or thank you cards, but also continue to live. I’m kissing my kids more, squeezing out extra hugs here and there and telling friends and family I love them. Because through all the hurt, I’ve been overwhelmed by the generosity, love, and thoughtfulness everyone has given me and my family. Meals, donations to charities in my Dad’s name, cards, texts, and so much more have helped me realize how lucky I am to have so much support during such a sad time.
It’s been interesting to hear the kids process PopPop’s passing. Will instantly told us that PopPop is an angel looking down at us when we told him what happened. Josie got a calendar sent home from school on Monday (2 weeks after 3/31). When she was going over each day till the end of school, she paused on Memorial Day. Then she told us, “Glad I don’t have school on Memorial Day because we need to go see PopPop.” I asked her to explain and she said, “We need to go to his grave and visit him”. Last night, on the way home from roller skating, Ben said, “When it thunders I think PopPop is bowling. Or maybe he is playing hockey!”
In my eulogy, I said my dad will always be with us, he is in all we do. A few days later, Josie recited my speech almost exactly. Listening to my kids talk about PopPop, makes me cry and beam. I’ve realized he isn’t just in his kids, but my kids.
“I carry your heart with me (I carry it in my heart)
I am never without it (anywhere I go you go, my dear; and whatever is done by only me is your doing, my darling) I fear
I carry your heart (I carry it in my heart)” – e.e. cummings
I love you dad.