today marks month 11 without my dad, and quite honestly, i'm dreading the next four weeks. i'm having a hard time getting into the christmas spirit knowing that he won't be with us this year, and i sure as heck don't want to face that dreadful day that follows four days later.
last christmas was beautiful. it was round two of 'operation spoil our parents', an idea my siblings and i came up with to bless my mom and dad's socks off. i'll never forget the look on my dad's face when he saw us pull out another gift, and another. he just kept smiling, shaking his head, and saying, "this is too much".
or the joy he had when we were all together eating his favourite brushetta. "i'm going to eat this on boxing day", he said. having been sick for as long as i can remember, food was one of the only things that brought him joy in life at this point. food and family. and he had both of those right in front of him that day.
if i close my eyes i can picture his face when he opened the rascal flatts CD that he wanted, and can hear him talking about his favourite song [i still can't listen to it]. i could barely keep the tears back when my mom told me he spent his last day listening to the CD over and over, right before they went out to his favourite restaurant, east side marios, with the gift card we gave him. it was a perfect day. perfect except i wasn't there to share it with him; and oh how i wish i could've been there to share it with him.
he was a real trooper that man. he endured several heart attacks and surgeries, a stroke, kidney failure, the loss of his legs and his independence, and the list goes on. yet he kept going, inspiring me each and every day. inspiring me today.
love you and miss you, dad.