Holidays are hard when you lose someone you love…it’s as simple as that.
I didn’t spend every Christmas Eve with my Dad, but I never missed talking to him since Christmas Eve is when our family opened up presents.
This year will be the first year that I will miss talking to him….I will really miss talking to him.
Below was my eulogy to him when he passed away soon after Thanksgiving…holidays are hard.
Remembering My Dad
My Dad had a fondness for pictures….many many pictures…. album after album of photos, postcards….and photos of postcards….and maps too. He would eagerly, and endlessly, share with us these pictures and their many stories. Lucky for me I have a very short-term memory so these pictures and stories were almost always new to me.
Unlike my dad though, I have very few pictures to speak of. I tend to live in the moment, absorbing everything around me, always afraid I’m going to miss something while I peer into a camera lense to get that perfect shot. It’s OK not to get that billionth picture of a landmark building or mountain setting, but the same cannot be said about the people we love. While buildings & mountains are here generation after generation, the ones we love are not.
Earlier I said: “Lucky for me I have a very short-term memory so these pictures and stories were almost always new to me”. But that blessing has also become my curse. For without pictures and without memory, I have much to lose when I lose a loved one such as my dad.
Before this service my wife Gina searched all over our house for pictures of my dad with my son Nathan. We found ONE. It’s one of my favorite pictures ever….my dad holding my toddler son at nearby Eggshell Land. I may not find many more pictures like that, but thankfully many more pictures of my dad exist from other family events, courtesy of my brother Gordon and sisters Monica & Birgitta. I am thankful to them for those memories.
I must admit though that the thing I will miss the most about my dad is his voice…his accent…his gestures…his personality. Characteristics not captured in photos…characteristics that I’ve captured in only ONE video. Since moving to Texas I’ve had to rely on hearing his voice instead of seeing him. I only wish I could’ve captured his voice like I have my mom’s whenever she left me a voicemail message.
I love my mom’s messages…they are always in a sing-song voice, like this message:
…this is mommy
…daddy & I wish you a happy new year
…and a healthy one
I wish my dad would’ve left me voice mail messages too.
For now, I can still remember my dad’s voice from when I talked to him the day before he passed away. He wished he could’ve talked more that day. I could hear how tired he was and how weak he was. But I could also hear his love…his happiness that I remembered to call…his hope that I call again soon.
We’re going to miss those pictures…We’re going to miss those stories…We’re going to miss those phone calls.
We’re going to miss you dad.