Grieving, Coping and Remembering

Five years ago today, my Dad died of a sudden and massive heart attack.  In the blink of an eye, he dropped off the face of the earth.  He was just 52 years old, and left us far too soon.

My Grandmother lost her only son, and my siblings and I were left with unbearable emptiness and sorrow.  I have tried really hard to understand what happened, and why.  It never really makes any sense though, no matter how I spin it.  He should still be here, and sometimes I think if he had taken better care of himself he still would be.

I have been thinking a lot about my Dad the past couple of weeks, and I have been saddened by some of my thoughts.  When I was growing up, my Dad and I didn’t really have a relationship.  I was stubborn, and refused to give him any time.  If it weren’t for a great friend, who pushed my Dad to make a phone call, I would have never had the chance to know him as an adult.  Thanks to Trudy , I was able to spend nearly five years getting to know my Dad.

Even with that time, I didn’t really know that much about him. I brainstormed yesterday, and this is what I came up with:

  • Dad was a mechanic by trade
  • He was allergic and/or sensitive to chlorine
  • He had, and lost his own business (Badger Manufacturing)
  • He owned a second business (Lynx Services), but I have no idea what he did
  • Dad LOVED dogs, especially German Shepherds 
  • He could make amazing pizza
  • He suffered from type 2 Diabetes
  • He was adopted and raised by his Aunt
  • He was born in Germany, and sent to Canada when he was 2
  • Dad loved Cuba and vacationed there a few times
  • He always called me Krista Lynn
  • He has a biological brother in Germany who he never met

That is about all I could come up with.  It saddens me, because as his daughter, I feel like I should know a lot more about him and his life.  Am I wrong to be disappointed by this?

In five years, my life has changed so much, in ways I’m sure he would be proud of.  I have a great job, funny enough, in the automobile industry.  I often wonder if it was something I was destined to do.  The job found me in the first year he was gone, and I have been there ever since.

Photography has become a HUGE part of my life.  I have always loved it, but it has really grown into a passion.  I have started collecting vintage cameras, inspired by the camera I inherited.  Dad’s AE-1 is probably my most prized possession.  It has recently been cleaned and repaired, and I spent this afternoon shooting with it.  (I will post those pictures in the coming days.)

Slowly, it becomes easier to cope.  I don’t think it will ever really be better though.  I often wonder how other people deal with these situations, and whether others feel the same way I do?

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sending you love.

I hope my kids do the same for me one day.

Funny … I have my Dad’s AE-1 as well, and photography, which I learned from him. He is gone from my life now too.

Cherish the memories that you do have, hold them dear. Time eases the loss, but it does not leave.

D

Beautifully put.
I know he would be very proud of you.

[…] Friday marked 5 years since I lost my Dad.  It was a tough and gut-wrenching day for me.  As hard as it was, it was a […]

Henry Hansen

Wow – sorry I missed this, Krista.. I have to say that it’s kinda weird to see that your father and I were born in the exact same year. We all assume that we will live a long life – but that’s certainly not guaranteed. I can’t imagine not having a relationship with my children, but we are all different. We all have different experiences and capabilities -and we all show our love in different ways. I AM awfully glad that you did finally have a few years to get to know him as he was as an adult – good or bad. I hope each day that goes by will fade the bad memories, and grow the good ones, and that the memories will all be good ones as time goes by.

It’s a good reminder that being a good mother or father is an awesome responsibility – and an even greater opportunity to make another person’s life a good one. How lucky your kids are, to have you..

[…] my Dad passed away in 2005, I inherited his Canon AE-1.  Although it took me 5 whole years to summon the […]