Last Thursday, my father past. I know that my father was not doing well and that his time would be soon, but this was pretty quick. He was not doing well, but we still had some hope that he would get better and then he had a bad night and was unresponsive the next morning. It was shortly after that, that he past away. I was sad and lost when I got the news. I was in San Francisco just about to leave for dinner with a friend of mine and just did not know what to do. I eventually went back to my hotel and booked a flight to Myrtle Beach to be with my family.
I was not certain what to feel. It was a lot different than when my mother past. When my mother past, I wanted everybody to know as soon as possible. I posted that my mother has past on every social media that I was on, but for my father, I just posted that I was going to say goodbye to my father. Thankfully, my friends understood and sent their wishes and condolences. Some of the messages talked about my father being a “great man” and at first, I wondered who they were talking about? Did they know the man that I knew? He was a pretty stern father, but as I let those comment soak in, I started to remember the good times with my father.
Yes, my father was very strict in raising us and I believe he was because he wanted something better for us. He flunked out of college and had to work his ass off for what he got. He constantly saw college graduates get ahead of him just because they had a degree. He drilled it into my head that I should be an engineer when I was growing up, I had no idea what an engineer was, other than the guy who drives a train. He also had a lot of wisdom, he told me 90% of what I learn from going to college would be from just being there and that I should go away to college. Well, I went away to college and it was a great experience. Going away to college allowed me to believe that home is where I hang my hat.
We had a lot of good times growing up. The camping trips during the summer. One summer, we spent our time going across each New England state. We spent two weeks in Maine that summer and had a two day canoe trip. We fit all six of us and two dogs into one canoe. I was a wonderful trip, and people wonder how we fit all of us into one canoe. Also while in Maine, we visited Higgins’ beach. I have no idea if we were related to the beach or not, but it was cool to be there!
One of the most memorable moments in my life with my father was after I won the state wrestling championship, my father was the first person that I connect with after leaving the mat. I think he was out of the stands before the final buzzer went off waiting for me. I know I have written several times about this event and each time it brings a tear to my eye.
Shortly after my mother past away, I went down to visit my father. He was still having a hard time with my mother not being there. The trip was during the NCAA basketball finals and we got to watch his team, UConn, win the championship. He was so excited! We had to go to his neighbors and soap up his car windows with UConn #1. It was amazing to watch him bounce down the street like a little kid. It was good to see him happy!
I am sure the wonderful memories will come back in time and I am sure that I will have some ups and downs in the days to come. For now, I am going to enjoy these memories and hope that he is happy where he is now.