Last night as I was laying in bed I couldn't stop thinking about my daddy.  (I drank hot chocolate before bed, so it was a long time before I fell asleep :)  And for the first time in a long time, I was able to really think about him with a huge smile on my face.  Not a face full of tears and heartache.  Sometimes I honestly avoid thinking about him, b/c it just hurts so much.  Memories came rolling in about the things he used to do.  The silly way he was.  My dad was a very silly man.  He had the most insanely odd sense of humor Ive ever known in anyone.  The things he made jokes out of would send most people running for the hills, and I loved it.  He had so many little quirks.  Little things he would do with his hands when he talked or was in a goofy mood.  Little things he would do with his voice.  He gave all of our cats the longest strangest 'pet' names.  He was his own unique being, different from anyone Ive ever met.   And the most creative person I will ever know.  He oozed creativity.

He had very strong piscean energy.  He had amazing, sort of other worldly characteristics and moods, a huge heart for the people he felt loved by and for animals, a gentle soul.  As well as moments of desperate despair, self hate, and acting out in anger from deep buried childhood wounds.  When I was younger it was rough around our house alot.  Usually centering around my brother, and I grew up feeling an enormous amount of guilt that he was the one who endured the weak parts of my dad.  There were periods of my life when I questioned whether or not my dad was a good man.  I was confused by the contradictions of his sweet soul and his anger and distance at times.  But I always knew he was a very good man with alot of hurt in his heart, and the hurt is what was showing when he showed those sides, and I felt so much empathy for him.  And I share the same empathy for my brother who endured a much different life than I did.  I have been a witness to watching both of these special men in my life, blossom into beings who I completely admire and respect for so many reasons.  They have both shown me how to grow through adversity in a world that is not always equal for all.  They have shown me that just because you have some really hard patches in your life, doesn't mean that is who you are, or who you have to remain.  I am in complete awe of my brother who is holding down an amazing, highly intelligent job, and raising a five year old son all by himself.  It's alot of work and he is doing it so well.  He continually amazes me.  My family has alot of women in it, and my dad and my brother are the two men who Ive had to look up to in my life, and I'm honored that its them. 


Since my dad decided to take his own life, I have been buried with emotions of sadness, anger, guilt, emptiness.  So many different hard to understand feelings.  I felt a huge lightness come over me after releasing his ashes on new years eve.  But still at times, I find myself overwhelmed with these feelings.  I felt guilt for not being there for him as much as I should of after my mom died.  I went through alot of my own craziness, twists and turns in relationships, and a general period of mistrust to the point I didn't even want to leave my house.  I will always feel I should of hung out with him more, taken him out to do more things.  I know I did.  I did alot of things with him, but I still feel I could of done more.  But at the same time, those few years after my mom died, was the closest I ever became with my dad.  Before then, my mom was always the one I would talk to about personal things.  And my dad actually became that person.  It was a dynamic I never thought I would have with him.  We talked on the phone alot, and he would tell me all about the relationships he was 'trying' to have, and I would tell him all about what was going on with me.  Ill never forget the ways we were able to open up to each other during those 3 years.  I actually got to witness my dad 'finding' himself.  He was married to my mom for 26 years, and for the first time he had to learn what life was like alone, and actually face himself, his fears, and his regrets.  And at the same time, learn what really made him tick, and what made him come alive.  I literally saw him blossom before my eyes.  And through the stretch we all had to endure of watching my mom die of cancer, he showed his love nature in the most amazing ways, one of which was hand crafting his own wifes coffin.  He was a carpenter, and this was such a monumental moment for him to share his craft in this way.  We were all so proud of him for being able to do it.

I will never stop being impressed with my dad.  The way he lived his life doing what he loved with his hands.  The way he would teach himself how to do something if he had no clue how to do it.  His sense of humor.  His love for music and friends.  His love for his dog Noogs.  The things he taught me growing up.  His hardworking ways.  So many things.  I can still hear him calling me 'kiddo' in my mind.  He was the only one that called me that.  I hope that I can continue having more and more moments of remembering him with a huge smile on my face.  I want to get past all feelings of anger and guilt so I can freely communicate with him without those walls Ive built.   


My daddies life story is one full of heartache, trials and tribulations, love, learning, loss, creativity, goofyness, providing, enduring, expressing... the list goes.  A very human experience for a being that was out of this world.   I am so glad he was my dad.