It's been almost a year since my father died (June 8, 2005) and I'm still not used to it. I was talking about this with my cousin Todd shortly after Dad's and he shared his experience of losing someone very close to him. He said something like "The pain does not go away, it just becomes part of who you are." That has certainly been my experience as well. I'm not angry about it and I don't mope around, but I certainly miss him. Here is a letter that I wrote to him the night after he died.
A Letter to My Father
It’s late and it’s hard to say goodbye. I wonder what I will miss most about you.
A Saturday phone call to find out how to fix the fan
…or the sink
…or the toilet
…or the lawnmower
Can you fix the ache in my heart right now?
I will miss… working together on Adelman’s lawn,
painting houses together,
putting in a driveway,
shingling someone’s roof
I loved to work with you. I love to work because I learned that from you.
I will miss… playing sports with you and talking about the Red Sox
the fact that you really wanted to know about the weather
fishing with you (or at least talking about it)
the way you always looked for a bargain
I will miss… the sure sound of your trombone
your love of music
playing songs with you
It is an honor and a privilege to follow in your footsteps.
I will miss… your daily display of courage in facing hardship
your deep and abiding faith in Jesus Christ
your tender heart that was so easily bruised
your example of faithful care and provision
for your parents,
for your children,
for your extended family,
for your tenants (your own personal welfare system),
for your neighbors – in other words for everyone you met.
I will miss you. You have always been my hero. I learned to be a man from you – not from Rudyard Kipling, not from a thousand sermons or from ten thousand books. I learned it from you.