Wednesday, October 19, 2005

6:04 pm... I'm gonna watch you shine...

The past week has been up and down... Down because my best friend's pregnancy ended - most likely a chemical pregnancy and my heart breaks for her... and it has found me stuck to my computer trying to edit my wedding photos and upload them to a website so that I can finally order pictures for our families from our wedding - Yes, I've been married for over a year and yes I'm just getting around to this... so sue me.

I have this ambitious dream of getting this done and then of actually making a scrap book out of the pictures for my mother and mother in law... so I can get the daughter of the year award... (Quit laughing... it could happen in theory)

However looking at the photos triggered something for me... That there was one person that was missing and that no amount of editing would put him in the picture. That person was my dad. He died March 12, 2004... a month after I became engaged. In that month's time he planned my wedding - or at least took care of a good majority of it and managed to blab all over the county about his daughter getting married and how happy he was about it and how much he loved his future son in law. i still remember the last time we - meaning my parents, myself and my then fiance went to church and my dad introduced Dan as his son. I doubt Dan remembers it... but I do. My dad was very proud of my choice. I am too - so if I ever post of my husband being an ass - my dad would understand, but he would probably also remind me that Dan's human...

Anyway - my dad's death left a hole... a hole that nothing has seemed to fill. My father in law is a nice guy but he totally doesn't get me. My dad got me. He totally got me. In the last year of his life he would always be there for a phone call from me in the morning when I was coming home from work and was tired. He probably only heard a quarter of the conversation as he was deaf as a post, but he listened and he responded every now and then and asked questions and let me vent. He said goodnight and I love you whenever we hung up the phone. Not to say that my dad and I always got along because we didn't. My husband witnessed my dad and I having an argument over my sister and my mom... he walked away... Why? Why would a cop walk away when two people he cares about are arguing? Because he had never witnessed me raise my voice like that or my dad do the same... and in the end we hugged each other, gave one another a kiss and moved on.

I still remember the phone call from my mom... I was just hopping on US 131 southbound to head to work and returned my mom's call. I thought she was exaggerating... I prayed she was exaggerating, but I called work talked to Sally O... and had already gotten off the highway and was headed back to my house to grab Chance... and I thought to grab a black dress... just in case. Sometimes being a trauma nurse sucks... I then sped towards the other highway to get my ass home... and tried to frantically reach Dan... when I finally did he headed towards the hospital...

I still remember listening to the music that I wanted played for the father-daughter dance - "Father & Daughter" by Paul Simon from the Wild Thornberry movie... and talking to myself... saying "Dad if you have to go it's okay... I understand... and I know you wouldn't go if you didn't feel I would be okay." and I got pulled over. Why?

Well I was speeding... quite fast... I had Chance in the car barking, I was crying and I immediately pulled over and got the license and registration and told the officer "I'm on my way to Marlette to see if my father is alive or dead." That was the first time I uttered those words... dead and my father in the same sentence. The officer came back shortly thereafter and gave me a ticket and made me promise him that I would drive safely. About a minute later I called my fiance... and he didn't want to talk to me... kept pretending that the phone connection was crappy... I had to resort to asking questions like... "Does he have a pulse." I finally had to say "It's okay if you tell me he's dead. I'm okay I just need to know now." He confirmed that my dad had just been pronounced. He didn't want to give me that news. He knew just how much it would hurt me.

I still remember the phone calls I made... to work to tell them... to my best friends... and then I had to debate about whether or not to call my siblings... because my one brother and one sister were estranged from my family. I remember listening to that song... "Father & Daughter" over and over and over during the 2+ hour drive. I remember crying the whole way there... and thinking I have to be strong for my mom - which I did... I took care of everything... the funeral arrangements, the social security, the life insurance, the health insurance, my mom...

I remember arriving and coming in and seeing my estranged brother and his wife... and seeing red. Red because he didn't have the decency to see his father when he was alive, yet had the audacity to see him when he was dead. I remember talking with the paramedics and learning what had been done for my dad...I remember asking for a minute alone with my dad and no one really giving it to me but finally... they did... and touching him... he was still warm and I found that so odd... he was warm throughout... I still don't know if someone put a warm blanket on him or what the deal was, but his body was still warm and to me that was odd... and I remember asking the nurse a friend of my husband's about the time of death and finding out that the ticket I received and my dad's time of death were the exact same time. I think everyone got a chill up their spine. It was my dad's last little reminder to me... to slow my ass down...

So what's the point of all this... I don't know. I had to get this out... I relive it frequently... I relive my wedding day and how it "should" have been... I do look at my wedding day as a day with someone missing, I'd do it all over again to marry my husband... but it would have been so much better if he would have been there...

Fortunately I know he knew just how much I loved him... we had that kind of relationship... and I have no regrets, but that he would have lived to see a grandchild from me and that he would have been at my wedding... but these words Father & Daughter mean a lot to me...

My wedding did not include a father/daughter dance... I couldn't do it... my uncle was kind enough to walk me down the aisle, but I just couldn't put a substitute in and listen to that song play... it was too fresh... too raw... it still seems at time to be that way... and I don't know if it'll ever get any easier... I know he's always with me, but it's just not the same... my dad was supposed to be there for my wedding... and he was supposed to be there when I had a baby... those two events were something I dreamed of and talked about and they always included him being there for them... and if we ever have a daughter... I'm going to play this song for her and her father... and hope it makes them shine...

Father & Daughter by Paul Simon

If you leap awake
In the mirror of a bad dream
And for a fraction of a second
You cant remember where you are
Just open your window
And follow your memory upstream
To the meadow in the mountain
Where we counted every falling star

I believe the light that shines on you
Will shine on you forever
And though I cant guarantee
Theres nothing scary hiding under your bed
I'm gonna stand guard
Like a postcard of a Golden Retriever
And never leave till I leave you
With a sweet dream in your head

Im gonna watch you shine
Gonna watch you grow
Gonna paint a sign
So youll always know
As long as one and one is two
There could never be a father
Who loved his daughter more than I love you

Trust your intuition
Its just like going fishing
You cast your line
And hope you get a bite
But you dont need to waste your time
Worrying about the market place
Try to help the human race
Struggling to survive its harshest night

Im gonna watch you shine
Gonna watch you grow
Gonna paint a sign
So youll always know
As long as one and one is two
There could never be a father
Who loved his daughter more than I love you

Im gonna watch you shine
Gonna watch you grow
Gonna paint a sign
So you'll always know
As long as one and one is two
There could never be a father
Who loved his daughter more than I love you

1 comment:

marissa said...

oh hello there