Dad’s birthday is coming up on February 20th, and it also marks 3 months of life somehow moving on without him. 3 months of tears, struggles, laughs. 3 months of days and nights. 3 months of life.
A lot of ups, and a lot of downs. I thought “hey, by 3 months life will be back to normal”…. But, honestly, life will never be “back to normal”. This is a new normal. People talked about it, but I never really understood it.
I would LOVE to have life back to how it was 3 months ago. There is so much going on now that I would love to just pick up the phone and call dad about. My shoulder injury, my appointment coming up for my neck and back, dealing with 10 years of losing one of my good friends. The weather, the Eagles, the Phillies. There are so many things I just want to talk to him about. And, I do talk to him as if he’s here, but I’m really missing what he would say back.
3 months. A quarter of a year. As much as I miss him and want him here, I know he’s here. I know he’d be so proud of my mom, my siblings and I for how far we’ve come in 3 months.
I hate that it took losing him for me to find the courage to begin writing (and honestly to even figure out that I wanted to do it and enjoy it). I always wanted to have that “thing” that my family could be proud of me for. Some way to stand out a bit and have something other than liking PBR for dad to be proud of me about.
My random, spur of the moment “What the F*ck is Fibromyalgia” post, really got things going. I wrote it as an easy way to explain to a few people what fibro is, and instead of a long facebook post, I threw it in here. I still can’t believe the response. Not only did friends and family like it, but people I don’t even know began to read and share it. Before I knew it a fibromyalgia resource website reached out to me and asked if i wanted to write for them.
I’m not a writer. Well, I guess I didn’t think I was. So far I’ve written 2 articles for them, and it’s surreal. Within 24 hours this is the response to my most recent one, about sleeping (or lack thereof) with fibromyalgia.
I’ve been dealing with the fibro pain for as long as I can remember, and dad was always reassuring me that I wasn’t crazy, or making it up, and always knew I would find an answer and solution. He always knew when I was trying to hide my pain, and would look at me, give me a hug, and tell me it would all be okay. He’d get me motrin, water and a snack. Put on something I wanted to watch on TV and would just sit with me. God, I miss him.
It’s so crazy how far I’ve come with it. I still sit on the couch and cry about the pain sometimes. But now, I’m reaching hundreds of people who are experiencing the same. finding solidarity in this terrible thing and I’m able to do some reassuring now. I’m able to be “dad”. People have messaged me after reading this article and my last one saying how much it spoke to them, and how they feel so much less alone. I like feeling a little bit like dad. Able to give that “hug” and let someone know that they aren’t crazy.
It’s insane. And I know dad would be so proud and would be sharing it with everyone he knows. And, I know he is proud, even though he’s not physically here. Like I said, this is the kind of thing I always wanted to share with him, and I hate how it all played out. I know there’s so much he was proud of me for aside from liking PBR. But I never felt like I had my “thing”. I have a normal job, no kids, no house. Just me being me renting my little apartment and talking to my cat. I have a lot going for me that I am proud of, but never had my “thing” that made me feel like I really stood out to him (or to anyone, really).
Life is so weird, how I always wanted his stamp of approval and him to brag about something, and it took losing him for me to find my voice. 3 months ago I never in my life would have thought I’d have a blog, and be writing articles that are reaching hundreds of people. I know dad is influencing all of this, and looking down proud and encouraging.
So, here’s to you dad. 3 months down, a lifetime to go. Thank you for influencing me, encouraging me, and pushing me, even when I didn’t know I needed it.
Happy birthday dad. Love you, and miss you.