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I miss my dad. I didn't realize how much I would.

I mean, when my grandfather died in 1986, it left a pretty big hole in my world. Especially since he died one week before I graduated from high school. And I realized right away that he'd never be there again, I'd never be able to talk to him again, show him what I was crocheting or knitting, hug him. But even so, I realize that Grandad was happier being with Grandmom again. (Call me crazy, but I believe in heaven. Period.)

Now, Dad's gone. I miss him. I miss being able to stalk him. I'd walk behind him, stomp my feet (so that I wouldn't startle him), and say "stomp, stomp, Stomp, STOMP, POUNCE!" and hug him from behind. Sometimes he'd hear me coming and stop still to make it easier for me to hug him. I miss hugging him. He was just the perfect size and warmth for hugging.

I still have good memories of him, and not just of the last few years with his various health troubles, his increasing difficulties walking or keeping his balance (I had to be careful not to knock him off his balance when I hugged him), or other problems he was having. Good memories such as: him laughing at the television, laughing at jokes I told (and sometimes retold to him), the hugs, sharing my trips to the southwest, his trips to Texas/New Mexico/Arizona area.

We're still finding things in the house from Dad as we clean up and reorganize. One item was a Father's Day card I had given him, that he held onto. Two days after he died, Mom found a letter he wrote to all of us children years ago, but it had no date on it, so I'm guessing about roughly when he wrote it. It made me cry, laugh, and puzzle over why he wrote it like he did, and didn't write another letter to add to it. But oh, so glad he wrote it, as it helps in the grieving and healing process.

Love you, Dad. Miss you. Can't wait to see you again!

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