Friday, June 18, 2010

the impending father's day

It's actually 3:28 a.m. as I write this. Unpacking from our move and working at the clinic have kept me so busy that I haven't spent any amount of time ruminating about what thought of loss has most taken up my mind this week.
But as I've driven to work, opened boxes of photo albums and placed Jeff's dresser in the corner of the room, the thought of the impending "Father's Day" has popped into my head briefly and painfully.
I have come to fear this day for my kids. I worry that they'll begin to notice other 'normal' families out for Father's Day breakfast. That the flyers in the mail advertising copious amounts of tools for the other kid's dad will highlight their lack of an alive one. That the ties or other seemingly useless items that kids make to mark the day that they celebrate their dad will cast little shadows on my little one's hearts.
On Sunday, you'll find me at work. My kids will be babysat until I return to them. There will be no special brunch, fancy formal wear accessories or tool belts to give to Jeff to mark what a kind, funny or loving daddy he was.
So in the afternoon, the kids and I will practise our own father's day tradition. We'll head to the beach with helium balloons clutched in hand, tiny folded notes tied into the strings and send Jeff the father's day messages we wish we could hand over with a huge and mushy hug.
I hope he'll get them. I hope he will know that we remember what a fabulous daddy he was and will never forget his part in making our lives as special as they were...and are.
Thank you, my Jeffrey, for our little ones. Thank you for your giant love. We love you right back. Happy Father's Day, my love.


Anonymous said...

We did this when Elias died - Caia's little balloon was starting to look like it wouldn't make it . . . it went over our house and started to drop.

We lost sight of it and were about to go to the other side of the house to see if we could retrieve it, when suddenly, 'something' seemed to give it a huge boost, and we saw it start to soar back up into the air and follow Eibhlin's and mine.

I like to think that Elias had something to do with it . . .

I, too, fear fathers day for the same reasons. And, I too have been super busy with getting the store ready - yet thoughts of loss are always right there.

Thanks again Jackie, for writing so eloquently on what so many of us are feeling. My heart is with you and the kids on this day, fathers day, and all the rest.


Suddenwidow said...

Hi Jackie,

We did the balloon release last Father's Day, with notes written right on the balloon. The kids seemed to like it, we have nice pictures from the afternoon (though it wasn't at the beach!) and I thought we'd do it again. But this year the boys don't know what they want to do. I'm suggesting that if they don't want to do balloons (they are older and worry that someone will find their notes and be privy to something private between them and their Dad), then we should do something together that he would have done with them. Since we're too far away to go sailing on Sunday, I'm voting we clean sails, since it has to be done before we head to the coast and Austin would have enjoyed that with them. But the bottom line is I hate the day, because it, and all the days leading up to it, remind my boys about what they don't have anymore. It makes me sad for them and slightly guilt ridden because I tend to try and gloss over the day with my own Dad now. I feel like I shouldn't make a big deal over my Dad when my kids aren't able to do the same. And I feel bad for my Dad. It's such a tight rope I'm walking, as we all are.

Thanks for writing about what we're all dealing with. Hope Sunday afternoon at the beach is sunny and peaceful for all three of you.


Anonymous said...

As a grown adult, I am a motherless daughter, and have been for a long time. I struggle every year around mothers day with the endless barrage of advertisements for Mothers Day and the (inevitable) slip of someone's kind casual 'what did your get your mom for mothers day' question. I struggle to find a way not to hate that day. I long painfully, with an ache in my gut, to share a day with my mom, just her and I. I wish I knew what she would like to be doing on that day, wish I knew how she'd celebrate it. I'm trying to figure out a way to celebrate Mothers Day in the future. Trying to figure out a way to not let it bug me so much...

I've never thought of my fathers perspective on it. Your parental musings make me wondering what his thoughts are and how he might be feeling about it, and how his pain is likely doubled by worrying about me and mine. Rest easy knowing that your kids will be just fine. Love them and talk to them and let them be sad that they don't have a Dad beside them on Fathers Day. It's okay.

Maybe I'll send a balloon to heaven next year on Mothers Day. I kinda like that idea.

Anonymous said...

I'll be thinking of you tomorrow. I only know this from the perspective of the child, losing my own dad when I was still young. Father's Day was never my own favourite holiday. But I think it's important to mark it, all the same.

Constance said...

I never like fathers day as my own father died the day previous to it when I was only 9. I think part of why I didn't like it was because it/he wasn't celebrated/acknowleged, (I would have loved the balloon release) so it seems to me that you are probably one the right track....and it might even be harder on you than your kids. xo

Mama_Bear_Sarah said...

wish i could build a time machine and get to you RIGHT NOW so we could drown our shared sorrows in a bottle of really great wine.

peace to you today my dear.

Anonymous said...

hi there, I have read your blog in the past, then life got busy and I have been away for a bit from reading, but today I sat down to do some reading. I just want to say how absolutely inspirational you are!! I have not suffered a loss like you by far. But for me I have grieved over the health of my child. Your posts are so therapeutic to read and I only wish I was so brave to do a blog of my own.

Reading that you recently moved, wow incredible strength that must have taken! We have been tossing moving around and I keep going back to how upsetting it would be to our 6 year old to move away from his friends, even though I think a move would be healthier overall to us.

Anyhow I just wanted to put it out there that you are just amazing! and so glad that I sat down and did some reading this morning.