This is the very last picture I took of my Dad, August 7, 2010 fixing butterfly wings to my baby girl at her 1st birthday party. It is so sweet, the strong, calloused man and the bitty winged girl.
The last time I am certain I saw my Dad was August 13th last year when we were up for the star watching party. He fed my sick baby girl ice cream, which she vomited all over Grandma again shortly thereafter. I decided to go home rather than stay? As I drove away, he waved in that pink mole day shirt and I realized that with all the sickness and craziness I hadn't taken a single picture. I regretted it then and I regret it now. Just take the picture people. I do know I called him on his birthday, late, almost 9pm, the last of us to do so on his 61st birthday. I am so glad I did, even if it was just a few moments. I remember him sounding happy.
Brent is fairly sure he dropped by a time or two after that and maybe saw my awesome table that Able agrees he would have approved of, but I'm just not sure... which is maddening in itself.
He used to tell me so often, "Abbey, my body hurts every single day." I am so glad he isn't hurting any more. That said, for most of the last year my body has hurt every single day so I finally "get" that, unfortunately. (Yes, the costochondritis is back). Worse though is that my soul hurts hurt every day. Every day, every single day, I remember. Often, my kids ask where he is or say Grandpa liked X or those are Grandpa's cows, as we look at their picture books. It breaks my heart that he isn't here to celebrate their joy in him as he always doubted that people could possibly love him as much as he loved them. They did, they do, we do.
Today, I'm not as eloquent as my sister (her post is here) or as calm as my kids. I am not with my mother, as my brother is. I am just in pain and crying. I have to believe he is in heaven watching us, well, healthy and happier probably then I knew him most of the time. I miss you Daddy, Happy Birthday.