There is a lot of good in my life. I have a lot of very nice things. I have a great family. I have a lot I am thankful for.
But there’s a lot missing.
I wouldn’t wish the void of missing a parent on anyone, not even my worst enemy.
After my dad died, there’s a lot I missed out on. Or maybe he missed out on, seeing as though it was his decision to leave. I’m still angry about that sometimes. He was so smart and made such a dumb decision. I guess we all make those.
I distinctly remember a time when I was about 14. I was in a Claire’s store, and I noticed a young girl with her big, biker father. It was funny seeing him in such a frilly store. The entire time he helped her pick out earrings and was so happy to do so.
I don’t know why I did, but I approached him and took him aside while his daughter played with the racks. I told him what my dad had done, and how happy I was to see a father interacting with his daughter. It made me happy to see a little girl with a loving father. He actually hugged me, and told me how appreciative he was of my words.
I don’t know why I did that. I don’t know why I felt compelled to tell a stranger such a deep, dark factor of my life. But I did. It makes me so happy knowing that there are little girls out there with fathers that cherish them. I am so happy for those girls.
They say it gets easier and sometimes it does. Sometimes it doesn’t.
Due to the decision he made to take his own life, he won’t ever see me graduate college. He wasn’t there for prom. He’s not chasing my boyfriend away. He won’t be there for my wedding. He’s not there.
I used to tell myself that I would succeed for him, achieve for him, and honor him. I don’t know if I would say that now.
Everything I have done to succeed has been for me. I have worked so hard to be where I am today, I can’t even imagine dedicating that effort to someone that’s not even here. Maybe that’s harsh… maybe what he did to me was harsher.
Tomorrow will be another day for me, just like next years & the year after that. Each year I’ll feel a little more numb. Maybe it’ll get easy. Maybe it won’t.
Regardless, I still love my father despite his actions.
But please, please put your children first. Don’t hurt them the way I was hurt. Don’t make them suffer.
Don’t leave them behind.