Monday, July 1, 2013

Confessions, reborn

I loved my Dad. I was crazy about him. I always told everyone that I was Daddy's Princess. When I got engaged, I was so excited, because my Dad's health had been good. For so many years, I was afraid that he wouldn't be at my wedding. I was so excited that he would be there to give me away. I poured over songs that would be good Father/Daughter dance songs: "Butterfly Kisses," "Stealing Cinderella," "I Loved Her First," or "My Little Girl." I listened to them over and over and cried and cried, because we'd made me. My Dad would be here to give me away. I decided on "Stealing Cinderella" to fit my fairy tale theme.

Then my world came to a crashing halt.

Almost 6 months to the day of my wedding, my Dad had a stroke and life would never be the same again. He fought hard. They said he'd be a vegetable, but he got better. He knew us. He helped my mom balance the checkbook. He joked and teased. I pushed the wedding back to give him time to get better. It was a miracle. He'd be there. Maybe he'd have to be in a wheelchair, but we'd make it work. Then, they said cancer. He fought some more, but his body was too weak from the stroke and one dark December night, he gave up and my world stopped again. He was 56.

Sometimes, I get so angry when I think about everything he's missed. Since he left us 4.5 years ago, my nephew has grown up and graduated from high school. My niece who was given up for adoption found me. I had a beautiful baby, who he would have just adored. My wedding went on without him, his absence marked with a flicking candle. And then there are all the things to come: my nephew's wedding, more grandchildren, or great-grandchildren, growing old with my mom, watching him kids grow...

When I look at my daughter, I can't imagine missing out on any of those things. It breaks my heart to imagine that someone else might have to cry at her graduations, or zip her wedding gown, teach her how to sooth her own tiny newborn, cheer her own as she conquers the world. How can I teach her to be strong, fearless, confident when I'm not here. So I did it, I joined a gym today. I can't fool around anymore, I've seen what I can lose and I don't want to.

So that's why I'm writing this. I need you to help me be committed. If I tell you that I'm doing it, then I'd have to tell you that I've stopped and I don't want to have to do that, so I have to keep working, right?

Oh, and in case you are wondering, my godfather gave me away and we danced to Darius Rucker's "It Won't Be Like This for Long." Because it won't. Life moves so quickly and we have to keep up or we'll get trampled.

1 comment:

Amy McMean said...

I understand exactly what you are saying. Losing my Dad was the worst. I've been on my hubby about us both getting healthy because I don't want to lose him too. You can do it, because you have the best reason to, that cute little girl. :)