This is the first year we will not be able to celebrate Thanksgiving with my dad. He died last year in the beginning of December.
His birthday is November 24. Sometimes, Thanksgiving would fall on his birthday. For that reason, we usually celebrated his birthday on Thanksgiving, with everyone going to my parent’s house for turkey and pumpkin goodness.
As it gets closer to his birthday, I find myself missing my dad and almost in limbo about what to do. How will it affect the holiday? Should we celebrate as normal? That doesn’t feel possible and yet what do we do instead?
I worry about how my mother will react, my sister, myself. Before this, I never understood how hard it is to navigate grief and how unexpected it can be. Sometimes, I find myself crying when I drive down the streets I took to rush him to urgent care or later to his hospital. Sometimes, I don’t.
My littles knew him, but they are so young, I worry they won’t remember him. His laugh, sarcastic sense of humor, love of movies and fishing. My youngest looks so much like him, with blonde rather than red hair.
Like my little, I have his blue eyes and red hair. I am thankful he is my dad.
Be thankful for your loved ones. It can change so quickly.
We have started to listen to music my dad loved. Lots of country and folk. It makes me happy to hear my littles sing songs I used to sing with my dad and on vacations. This is one way they can continue to connect to him.
They really love some of the songs we used to sing and enjoy. It makes my heart happy to know parts of him will live on through me and them. So, while my heart may be heavy this Thanksgiving, it will also be full of shared memories and songs.