Sunday, September 2, 2012

Grief...It's What's for Dinner

I know the blog post title might sound tacky, but I don't emotions are all over the place.

Thank you, from the bottom of my heart, for your kind words on my last post. Thank you.

I am doing OK.

Mostly I have been doing better than OK, bolstered by the knowledge that my Dad is free from the constraints of his mind and body.

I held his hand while he took his last breath.

I never imagined I could feel so honored while doing so.

But the grief, it hits in unexpected places.

Today in church, I noticed ahead of time that the last hymn to be sung was the same one sung at my Dad's funeral. I was prepared. I was ready.

Until I wasn't.

Minutes before the song was to be sung, I found myself whispering desperately to DH that I had to get out, to escape, because I just couldn't hear it.

I stumbled down the aisle, tears streaming down my face, and then sobbed in the bathroom, where the sound was piped in.

When I got a birthday card from my Mom, well, it was the first one that said "Love Mom" and there was nothing from Dad. He always wrote in my cards and I cherished his words (still have all the cards!), and the first year after the stroke he dictated to Mom what he couldn't physically write, but his words were 100% him. The last two years my Mom signed his name when he could no longer contribute anything.

"Love Mom" was all she could write this year.

I miss him.
And yes, I am so extremely grateful to still have my mother in my life.

I spent three years trying to forget my Dad as a physically active man who loved to talk finance, religion, and do crossword puzzles for hours (the hard ones, sometimes in ink). It was too hard to remember that Dad while adjusting to the new post-stroke Dad.

But now, now those memories are pouring in, and they are happy-sad. I guess that's what all the memories of those who have passed are--happy sad.

At any rate, we're all surviving. I'm another year older and hey, no big whoop, right?

I just wanted to check in.

I have so many emotions swirling around about genetics that are coming from a place I thought was long since gone, but losing your father will do that to you. It has nothing to do with my beautiful babies who couldn't be more perfect in my eyes, but I'm still sad to know my Dad isn't carrying forward in my family in a genetic way. It's silly, but it's still there. Sigh. And I'm just gutted with grief over what they've lost in terms of their genetic past. Gutted.

So yes, I'm running. Long meditative runs. They aren't any easier, but in that space I can talk to my Dad, process some of these emotions, and get my body ready for my upcoming race.

Thank you again, sorry for the all over the place post. My next one will be about baking, and kiddos, and happy and light stuff. It has to be.


  1. Been thinking of you. Big big hugs.

  2. Just reading this, my thoughts are all over the place as well. I wish there was some words of comfort I could share with you that could make you feel better all at once, but I know for myself, the passage of time was what lessened my grief. My brother will have been gone for 7 years this year, and most of the time I am ok, but some days, it's raw all over again. I can only imagine the grief of losing a parent, especially one like your dad whom you admired so much. And it certainly is not silly to be sad about feeling the loss of your dad's genetic connection with your children. I remember people saying that it was good that my brother did not have children when he died, but it just made me sad that he didn't have kids. At least then, I would have a living breathing connection with him. And when my grandfather passed last month as we were accepting the fact that my genetics were not going to be passed on, it was that familiar sadness again. It's just so hard to let go sometimes... I wish you and your family peace in the days ahead.

  3. I am so sorry about your dad passing away. I did read your last post but just could not comment then. I could not help but burst into tears when reading it. Ever since my mom passed (just over a year ago)I cry every time I hear of someone losing a loved one, but especially a parent. Its going to be hard for a long time, be kind to yourself and think back often to the good, happy memories.

  4. Oh sweetie, how could it not be this way. Please allow yourself the time to grieve- and even the time to also feel happy and blessed and appreciative of your mother. Please know you are very loved out here. holding you hand, sending you love and healing

  5. Process it as you need to. We're all here to listen.

  6. I am so sorry for your loss. My heart just hurts for you. And the loss of genetics related to IF or adoption does seem to continue to crop up even when not expected.Hugs a you experience and process these huge losses.

  7. Been thinking of you MTL...I can understand what you might be feeling about the end of the line with regard to your dad's genetics and that his passing amplifies those feelings. If/when I lose my dad and feel that way, it will be good to know what to expect. Thanks for sharing. Happy Birthday as year's got to be a better Got to be.

  8. It is a rare dignity to be with the one you love when they die, their last mortal moments on this earth. While your children will not have a genetic connection to him, he will be part of their tapestry in your stories about his running or his favorite recipes or all the little ways he has shaped your life. I hope is a slave, or at least a harbor for you as you grieve your loss. Running mama

  9. Grief is a strange thing, it creeps up on you at the most odd times. I'm sorry again for you loss, but know your kids will know your father in many ways, through you, and how he touched your life. hugs.

  10. I haven't been here in a while, and now I see this sad news. I am so, so sorry for the loss of your Dad. I've read the difficult past years he has had and how painful it has been for you.
    I send you a big hugs and my thoughts are with you.
    Much love,
    Erica (DS)

  11. Thinking of you as you grieve...

  12. Thinking of you, MTL. It's good that you have that hobby (running) to give you time to be by yourself with your thoughts. Physical activity has always worked for me to help get to the essence of things. Hugs to you!

  13. I hope you are still doing okay these days. In response to your comment on my blog about the moster pants, I hate sewing and have never embroidered anything--I think you need a special machine for that or at least a fancier one than I have! Have you checked out she she made? They have some cute things and might be able to do something custom for you. Etsy might have something more yor style. Or perhaps check with a quilting shop owner to see if they can recommend someone local.

    Good luck!

  14. Checking in on you. I hope the intensity of the grief is easing up at least a little bit and that the reason you haven't posted is that you're too busy having fun with the kiddos. Thinking of you...

  15. I lost your blog only to find your post on Mo's exciting news. I lost my Dad almost 2 years ago and it certainly brings a lot of introspection and acceptance. The thing that helped me the most that first year was attending a weekly parental loss group through my local hospice - just call em up and ask if they have a group. They also have spouse loss groups for your Mom. Big, huge, HUGS ...

  16. I am so so sorry for the loss of your dad~ I am thinking of you during this time as you process your grief. Sending you a big ((hug))