Without Dad

It amazes me the distance that disease can create between people and families.
Alzheimer’s takes everything you once knew about someone and throws it in a closet,
locking the door, throwing away the key.
This Father’s Day is the first without my Dad and I’m trying to sort out my innermost feelings.
I will go to the cemetery tomorrow morning with a coffee in one hand and a cigar in the other
and try to remember the man I once called ‘Dad’.
I miss him. I truly do.
Not as he was in the past 6-8 years but in the days when I could tell him a joke and
he would laugh; when I could go to the fridge and ask him if he wanted a beer; when I could say, “Hi, Dad,”
on the phone and he knew it was me replying, “Want your mother?”
I will be with him tomorrow as he will be with me.

This Father’s Day will feel a bit empty, strange and maybe a bit of a relief that
I don’t have to see his withering body sucking on pureed food through a straw.
Tomorrow I will see him as the guy that never missed one damn baseball game of mine,
always called me ‘Michael’ not ‘Mike’, a man that taught me how to throw a baseball and pass a football,
a man that never ever let me down, a man that taught me what it means to be a man.
I still miss him dearly but tomorrow I will begin re-building in my mind the complete memory
of a longstanding hero of mine.
If I die being half the man that he was, I will be truly blessed.
Make time to visit or call your Dad today.
Happy Father’s Day to all.
Love you, Dad.


8 thoughts on “Without Dad

  1. Oh Michael, that is so sweet. My neighbor’s mother died after suffering through Alzheimer’s too and we were just talking about what a toll it takes on the family.

    Enjoy your time with him tomorrow. And Happy Father’s Day to you!!

    Thanks Carol.
    let me know the next time you get up to Boston.
    Be safe, be well.

  2. I’m not surprised in the least to see this post.
    Not one word is surprising, nor is the feeling in them.
    Our hearts and minds will be with you, as will our spirits, right along with your Dad’s, because make no mistake, he will be beside you as well.
    Relief for not having to see them suffer is not a bad thing Michael.
    To care enough that you don’t want to see them suffering is, in my mind, one of the most selfless things of all.
    The father you knew is still with you as he has always been.
    In your heart and your memories. These are 2 things no disease can ever take away from you.
    They are yours to keep for eternity.

    Can’t thank you enough for this comment because I know you understand.

  3. How beautiful!
    Happy Father’s Day to you!
    Knowing you as a husband to my longtime friend and Dad to my goddaughter and her sisters, they are very blessed to have you and to have had your Dad in their lives. Enjoy every minute of your time tomorrow with your Dad! :-)

    It was a very nice day, Lynn even though I had to work.
    The girls and Pamela made it special.

  4. Happy Father’s Day Michael…I know it will be bittersweet. You lost your dad…but thanks to him….you are an AMAZING dad to your 3 beautiful daughters!
    My love and prayers are with you!

    It was a different kind of Father’s Day but it was all good.
    Thanks so much for the comment!
    Much appreciated.

  5. Excellent tribute. While I still have my father, I understand the mixed feelings that you have. It’s tough watching the people you care about suffer through a long illness. I’m glad that you have lots of good memories of your dad. You’re one of the few people I know that considered their father as a friend.

    I hope you have a nice Father’s Day tomorrow. {big hugs}

    My Dad and I went through some things you can’t even imagine.
    Funny thing is, it brought us closer together.
    Thank you for the comment.
    You’re a peach.

  6. Thank you, Michael, for putting into words how I feel without my Dad. He was pretty much himself until the end but you never stop missing the Dad who was the one who taught you to play guitar, pitch a tent and was always there for you.

    Michael showed me just how much your Dad meant to all of you;
    by his sense of humor, his musicality, his love of music, his crazy ways.
    Your father lives and thrives through your family in so many wonderful ways.
    Please tell Jude I said hi and keep yourself happy.
    all best,

  7. I’d like to hear more stories about your dad. Gosh, you are lucky to have had such a wonderful dad.

    Check my archives, kiddo.
    Stories are all over the place!
    (search by tag!)

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