Thursday, 15 March 2012

Tribute to my Dad . . .

Tomorrow is the anniversary of my Dad's death. He died after a long courageous battle with ALS. It feels like yesterday, but at the same time a completely different life time ago.
Around this time of year there is always an additional irritating stress which I am aware of but suppressing. Normally I am keeping myself too busy and simply ignoring the fact, or the possible reason, or any memory that I might be forced to recognise. I believe they call this denial. This is perhaps the first year since he has been gone that I've been consciously remembering and reflecting on his life and death. As painful as some of  the last memories can be all of the great ones throughout our short time together heavily outshine the horror of his passing. In fact I've come to realise it is somewhat of a crime to ignore his life because his death was so heartbreaking.
So I will remember him. His ridiculous infectious laugh which I unfortunately think has been passed down to me. A belly laugh that is so crazy that you can't help but laugh at or with depending on the situation. It's embarrassing but so pure and rich that it's to be cherished. Along with his laugh was a genuine smile that had the ability to force your frowning face into the same joyful grin.
I will remember his horrible singing, and I do mean horrible. He sure did give it his all though, which can be respected. He sounded somewhat like a dying animal, of the sort I am still unsure of to this day. I will remember his addiction to licorice. His horrible habit of eating peanut butter from the jar with a table spoon while he leaned over the counter and read the newspaper. His absolute love and passion for the game of Hockey. The birds he carved for me and my brother out of apples, which as a kid made him seem like a magician of miracles. I'll remember the silly doodles that I'd draw on scraps of paper that I left lying around, that would be "anonymously" added to at random. How we would listen to the same outdated Dance Mix tape over and over again that I liked on our road trips.
The list of silly little things that I'll remember is clearly too long to summarise, it is endless, larger than life. I suppose that is the point. The most important thing I will remember from my Dad and his death to date - is that in life it is all the little things that are remembered and cherished. The little things are what the big things are made of. Life is unknowingly short so the more little things you do, say, experience the bigger and better it will be. Life can be taken from us at anytime. I think we play victim to this knowledge too often, instead of reveling in it.
This year I am going to celebrate my Dad's life, the way he would have wanted . . . with his favourite band CCR. Old school classic rock baby. Here is to you Dad! A.K.A. Fast Eddie . . .


  1. I love this!! Your dad would be so proud of the person you have become today... he was an amazing man with such heart and drive which he passed on to you. I can attest to his horrible singing but that was what made our road trips so much fun. His passion for hockey was passed onto you in the form of painting, an expression which you paint beautifully. Uncle Eddie is greatly missed but forever in our hearts. Much love on this day.

  2. I cannot leave this site without telling a funny story that was before your time Jess. I was VERY pregnant with your brother, looking forward to being able to see my toes again and grumbling about how hard it was to sweep the wooden floor out at Mile 944 (secretly hoping that he would offer to do it for me). He came home the following day with a huge grin on his face, a new broom in one hand and a new dustpan in the other with a long handle on the dust pan waist high so I wouldn't have to bend over. He proudly announced that he'd got me something to help with the floor sweeping situation! I remember thinking at the time that it wasn't very funny, but in retrospect -- it's hillarious! Love Mom

  3. Oh Jess,

    You made me ball like a baby!

    Your dad sounds like an incredible guy; you're lucky to have a long list of silly little things. Something to be proud of.
    Reading this reminds me of how beautiful you are as a person (not that I need reminding, I see it daily,) and how lucky I am to know you. You're making this world a better place.

    P.s I love your laugh-It's one of a kind!