Sad headline huh? Don’t worry I promise to have a more pop-culture/silly post for Father’s Day later today, I gotchu fam. Prepare for some feels…
A little over three months ago my entire life changed when my dad’s life ended suddenly. Pops had been sick, he had really been sick since I was about 14 and his doctor informed my he wouldn’t even make it to my high school graduation. With 12+ years of never knowing if he would get better or worse I thought I was prepared for the day he left me.
I was not.
Not even a little bit.
As I walked into my house it was filled with emergency team members, police, and family. My first focus was to make sure everyone else was okay, I consoled everyone else before confronting my whole feelings. After that I just felt empty, I would just sit there with a hole in my heart mumbling “I don’t know what to do”. See, my dad was my best friend, we were very codependent on one another.
You then have about 4 minutes to try to process it all before the coroner comes over to ask you a million questions about the deceased’s health, and then with no transition whatsoever how and where they will be buried. Without the insane support system I had with my that night I would not have stuck around, fight or flight you know? I did not sleep, eating was not an option either. The majority of the first few days following that was funeral arrangements, calls informing family members/friends of what happened and a lot of people talking about you and your well being as if you are not even there. I took a little under a week off of work to try to get my life together again. That empty feeling still lingered. I didn’t want to see anyone, or post anything on social media that made it seem like I wasn’t still mourning, I was afraid I would look like an awful person for taking a minute of distracting behavior. There are a lot of things I was afraid to do; listening to music was high on the list, seeing my friends for fear of that look in their eye of how bad they felt for me, I felt pathetic. I guess I’m still afraid of that look in my friend’s eyes.
Going back to work was needed to feel a sense of normalcy and accomplishment. I needed to focus on myself, but continued to console others. Within the next two months I was forced to deal with my first birthday without my dad, Easter, and had to learn to stop making two portions of dinner because he would not be around to eat it. I didn’t believe anyone when they said that eventually the things that reminded me of him that made me sad at first would become happy memories. They really do, I swear. For example I no longer cry when I see a can of Coke Zero (#notsponsored). His birthday was hard, I still feel this gripping sense that he was taken from my and that it’s unfair he didn’t get to cheat and eat cake that day while I horribly sang happy birthday to him. And although I’m continuously told “he’s in a better place” I still think a better place would be with me. I’m told that I don’t talk about it enough, here you go.
The empty feeling is still around, and nothing will fill that hole but I’m learning to accept that. Today is hard, today is a day to appreciate the father figure you have in your life, I spent every day of my life appreciating my dad. He was my biggest fan, I wanted to make movies, he asked when he could see them. He drove me to set every single time, posted on Facebook whenever I had a project I wanted pumped up. He was always proud of me, and the unconditional love that man had was unfathomable. I’ll pour one out for the homie today, and miss him every day.
So ultimately what have I learned in these last three months, I mean that IS the headline. I’ve learned a few things:
– I’ll never stop missing him, but there are moments of pure bliss in life that I must embrace to survive.
– I was so, sooo lucky to have such an amazing dad (but I think I already knew that)
– That empty feeling is never going to go away, and no amount of drinking, food, or devious behavior can ever fill it.
– Support systems are everything
– My humour remains cynical
It’ll be okay one day, maybe.
Now back to your regularly scheduled pop culture nonsense.