Sunday, January 5, 2014

A Changed Form

It’s difficult to know what to do or say or even think on a day like today; how does one mark a milestone that they wish didn’t have to be?

Today marks three years since my dad went on ahead.  Three years – that seems so unbelievable.  There has been so much pain, and mourning, and missing him in that time.  There has been a lot of change, too, some for the better and some, well, probably not so much. 

Here's what I am working on at this point: living - and thinking - so as not to allow cancer or sadness or grief to rob me or my family of anything more.  Because what I have learned in this past year is that it's so important to see the good in the moments, even when the grief makes things look blurry. What I have been working on since I sat in this same place a year ago is finding ways to make sure I don't miss the good, the happy, the important moments, even as much as I miss my dad.

It would be so easy to fall into the habit of viewing things as a misfortune, an unfairness, or even a disaster; one thing I've learned for sure since my dad died is that getting a foothold on perspective doesn't always come naturally - it often takes work and effort.  For me, at this point, there are times when the grief is still really thick, but I can tell that it has changed form. I think so often that Dad would be shocked and probably even more disappointed than touched that there are those of us who are still so much in mourning; I know he would want those of us he loved and cared for to be happy. That thought pushes me to try to do better, to be better, to do my best, just as my dad pushed me to do so when he was physically on this earth.

And so, through effort and dedication, I continue to be transformed as time marches on, and so does my grief. Instead of leading me as it has, the grief mostly seems to accompany me these days, still present but in a changed form.  I find myself sometimes having to reach to feel him around me lately, which brings about a new type of fear and a new form of heartbreak.  I am able to say that I am happy and grateful in the midst of it all, though, even though when the tears and anger come as they still sometimes do, I miss Life for him - and I miss him more than I ever thought possible.

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