I heard once that you start dying the second after you are born. My dad passed away over 13 years ago. I cannot go a single day without thinking of him. He was a great man. I regret that I have more appreciation for him now than when he was still with us. Maybe this is because I have grown into a replica of him.
I wish he could have seen first how all of the sacrifices that he and my mom endured paid off to make their son a man. I wish he could have witnessed me falling in love to become the husband I'm proud to be. I wish he could have seen the boy that everyone labeled a 'cripple' evolve into an adult that strives to excel in his profession. I wish he could see me living a full and independent life. I wish we could talk. I wish he could see my eyes water up as I type this. I wish I could hug him.
We had our struggles and our differences over the years. It's only now that I know why he was so hard on me. Society considered me an underdog but he believed in me. My father could be considered underdog himself growing up. With a grade 8 education and callus hands from long hours of hard labour, he became a part owner of a company that employed over 100 employees.
When a loved one dies it forces us to stop and take inventory of our lives. To measure who we are and what we have become. I don't have those answers for myself but I know who my dad was. My dad was a strong leader that lead without having to say a word. He was a man with a huge heart...that it ended up quitting on him from caring and loving so much through his life. A man that loved stirring the pot and playing countless practical jokes. A man that worked hard to give me the opportunities I have now. A man that gave unconditionally in silence.
After my father died I heard stories of his giving nature. I heard that my father would deliver groceries to his employee that was off work on disability and was struggling to feed his family. Three weeks after his funeral I received a letter from a church that explained how my father worked on their their furnace many times through the years even though they could never afford to pay for the repairs. There were many more stories that were told. My dad never talked about any of these things...that was the type of man he was.
How will I be remembered? I'm dying to find out.
Until next time...