The Story of My Dad

It’s been quite a while since I last wrote on this blog, since September 2017 to be exact. A lot has happened in these last few months- one being my father passing away.

Five years ago, when I was about 15, my father was diagnosed with liver cancer and the doctor told us he had 6 months to live. I vividly remember that day. My father called me and my little brother downstairs and I saw my mom crying on the couch. I knew instantly that something wasn’t right looking at her face but I never thought it was going to be a death sentence. I remember my dad telling us what the doctor said, that there was a tumor in his liver and that his liver was also wrecked with cirrhosis. My mother sat next to me sobbing and my brother didn’t say a word, this was the moment that I realized I couldn’t let them see how upset I was.

My father always said that I was the most level headed one in the house and that I was his rock so I knew that if I broke down right there he would as well. So I simply said,”Okay. Is that all the doctor told you?” I don’t remember what else I said but I do remember looking out the glass door and watching the sunset. I tried to focus my energy on watching the sky change colors and how pretty the golden sunlight looked passing through the leaves of the tree in our front yard because I could feel the anxiety and sadness washing over me and I didn’t want them to see that. I remember going upstairs and locking my bedroom door and immediately breaking down. I also remember calling my best friend and crying over the phone. It’s a surprise she could understand me through the hyperventilating and sobbing but she told me she would come over and pick me up for a sleepover so I could get my mind off of things. Looking back at it now I am pretty sure that was one of my first bad anxiety attacks.

After that day everyone in my family changed. My parents became more religious and overbearing demanding we do everything together as a family. I remember getting in trouble one Valentine’s Day because I wanted to spend the day with my friends but my parents were livid saying that I should be with family because my dad was dying. That was the card they played anytime they wanted to get their way and it honestly made me resent them for a while. My little brother on the other hand became more reserved and quiet. He never opened up about his feelings and he didn’t apply himself in school. Meanwhile I was starting to focus on going to college and try to handle the pressure my father put on me to take care of the family. I typically call this period of my life my bitch period. I was so stressed with graduating high school and applying to colleges that the added pressure of my dying father pushed me over the edge. Luckily I had a pretty strong support group of friends who kept me in check otherwise I probably would’ve given up on everything.

Flash forward a little bit farther into the future and this year was probably one of the hardest years of my life and probably everyone in my family’s lives. In the beginning of the year the hospital finally told us that there was nothing else they could do for my father. They put him into hospice care and we started planning for his death. Oddly enough when my father was first placed in hospice he was still healthy; he still seemed like the man I knew my whole life. In fact, my mother told me of a conversation they had and my father wondered if he was put in hospice too soon. He seemed fine up until the week before he died. The week before, my mother and I were up until 5 am trying to take care of him because he was having hallucinations and wandering around the house but he didn’t know where he was. He also kept falling and my mother and I couldn’t life him up so we ended up having to call the fire department to come carry him back to bed. That night hospice said he was what they called “pre-active” which meant that he was in the stage before dying.

Then a week later I was about to go to bed when my mother started banging on my door sobbing. She said that my dad told her to let him go. So I went downstairs and held my fathers hand. I didn’t know that was going to be the last time I was going to hold his hand. My mother was in hysterics, his two sisters were also over at our house crying, and my brother was as distant as ever. So I did what I knew he would’ve wanted me to do- I acted as his rock. I held his hand and told him I forgave him for wanting to go and that I would take care of the family. I told him I loved him and that if he was in pain and it was his time to go that I gave him permission to do so.

That was a long night. I ended up calling hospice and getting instructions from them to administer the liquid morphine because he was in an incredible amount of pain and he couldn’t swallow his oxycodone. I was so scared but I was the only one stable enough to take action and care for him. An over night nurse came over that night and told my mom that he was in the “active” stage now and he had about five days left. I remember being relieved that we still had more time and maybe I could talk to him one last time the next day. Unfortunately he passed away in his sleep about three hours after.

This past month has been insane but I am also relieved that my father is no longer in pain. Despite preparing myself for years the day he died still came as a shock to me. I don’t think you can truly prepare yourself for something like that but thankfully my friends, family, and therapist have all been great with supporting me. I do miss my father greatly and I wish he could’ve been there when I eventually graduate college, get married, and have kids of my own but perhaps he is watching over me and my family and we will be reunited with him later on in life.

 

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You Hurt Me

You hurt me everytime you talk about wanting someone else. Everytime you bring up someone flirting with you or how you want to make out with other people. 

I should be over you. I know that. We broke up in April. I shouldn’t feel a painful stab in my heart anytime you bring up things like that anymore. I wish I was over you. I don’t want to feel this pain over someone who probably doesn’t feel the same about me when I tell him my endeavours with the guy from my local deli.

I am completely over you until you bring up things like that. So I guess that means I’m not over you at all. 

I want to tell you. I want you to know how much you are hurting me and how much I still want you. However I know better. I know not to because you are going to get upset and I would rather suffer in silence that have you upset at me. 

Honestly I shouldn’t be talking to you anymore. I should cut all ties with you because I know for a fact it would be better for me. I would finally have peace in my heart and live without the daily reminder of your existence and that you are spending that existence not loving me back. 

Unfortunately for me I can’t. Well not can’t but won’t. I won’t because we have the same friends and I don’t want them to choose one or the other. I won’t because you state how you rarely talk to people but still talk to me every day and I don’t want you to feel alone. I won’t because there is one pathetic part of me that hopes maybe one day you will want to come back to me and I want to be there waiting for you with open arms.

You hurt me so much but I’ll never let you know just how much to save you from the pain you cause me.

I Miss You

I thought by now I would be over you. I thought by now the pain wouldn’t be so strong. I was sadly mistaken.

I miss you. I miss talking to you. I miss the happiness you gave me and the love I felt for the first time in my life. I especially miss staying up late talking on the phone about random topics or how our days were. 

Whatever we had is gone now though. There is no hope for it coming back and I think that’s what especially hurts the most. You aren’t going to come back for me. You don’t care about me. You don’t love me anymore.

A huge part of me feels pathetic that I still think about you. I feel pathetic that I still feel like we could get back together one day. 

The saddest part is that if you asked me to take you back I would, in a heartbeat. I would do it despite the pain and the heartbreak and all the countless nights I spent crying myself to sleep wishing you were here in my bed holding me like you once did. I would take you back because I still love you and you still own a place in my heart.

Your Ghost

Memories of you haunt me. 

Some days I don’t think about you at all or what happened between us and all the pain it brought to me. I can think clearly on those days. I feel like the sun when it finally breaks through the clouds after it has rained for days.

Other days you’re all I can think about. It feels like I’m drowning in my own mind. Drowning in darkness because that’s what you left behind. The pain I felt settles on my chest, the heaviness of it makes me feel like I can’t breathe. 

I wonder if you ever get that way too. I wonder if I haunt your mind the same way you haunt mine. Maybe you don’t remember me at all. Maybe you got the pleasure of being able to move past the pain and hurt, to be able to live like usual. I’m not going to lie I hope you do feel the pain sometimes. I know it makes me a bad person but I want you to suffer like I do. 

My whole life I believed in ghosts. I never had any experiences with the paranormal but I always thought they existed. What if ghosts aren’t only the lost, tormented souls of people who have passed. What if ghosts are also the memories of people, the memories of what those people left behind that will sneak up on you in moments of weakness. Those ghosts reside in the crevices of your mind and roam the vast emptiness of your heart. 

I wish I wasn’t haunted by your ghost and I don’t know how to get rid of it.

Goodbye…

“Tell me that we will work this out,” I begged.

The harsh wind was whipping at my loose, golden hair. Cold air bit at my skin and I wished I had dressed warmer before coming outside. I continued to stare at Beckett; his midnight black hair blended in with the shadows surrounding us. His ice blue eyes seemed to twinkle like the stars in the sky above us.

I was naive to think that anything between us would work out but I believed we could overcome anything- that our love was enough. My heart ached for his love, my body yearned for his touch; I wonder if he ever felt that way towards me. I would’ve done anything for him: thrown away everything I was working on, leave the life I knew, move to a strange place, anything. Apparently he wouldn’t have done the same for me. Apparently I wasn’t enough for him.

A part of me knew this was going to be the end, that whatever we had was over; severed by his decision to leave. I still wanted to fight for us though. Everything in me screamed to fight for him- to fight for us. I could feel my heart breaking the longer we stood there staring at each other. I knew I had to memorize every part of him before he left forever. I took in his messy hair my fingers were knotted in just hours before, his hands that fit perfectly in mine, his beautiful bright eyes, the lips that I craved the kiss of, and his tall frame. I remembered his hug that made me feel like I was at home and the feeling of his warm body against mine as we slept.

I did not bother to wipe away the tears I let escape. I hoped that maybe, if he saw me crying, he would realize the mistake he was making. I wanted to see any reaction in him but I was not given that privilege. He stood there as stoic as ever. I could barely tell if he was breathing or not. He seemed like a statue. I hated that about him; I hated that even as I was breaking in front of him he still never showed any emotion towards me. Maybe I was dead to him already- I may as well be.

I was starting to wonder how long we were going to stand here staring at each other. Perhaps he was also trying to remember me or maybe he was hoping for me to leave first so I would be the one who turned away and ended everything. I could feel the cold air starting to settle in my vulnerable heart and burrow itself deep into my bones.

The longer I stood there I felt myself start to hate him more and more. I hated him for giving up so easily. I hated him for leading me on for so long. I hated myself the most though… for falling in love with him and for being so weak that by him leaving made me broken and lost. I should’ve listened to the people who told me I was making a mistake. I should have never agreed to meet him in his room the fateful night he came to town. I was stupid for doing what I did and as much as I hate him now in this moment, I hate myself more.

Maybe he could sense the sudden change in my emotion because he took a step back from me. That one single step shattered the pieces of my already broken heart. I watched as he took a deep breath and run his hand through his hair. He was stressed, as he should be. He knew what would come after this. He knew the damage was almost done. I waited to see if he was going to say anything to me but he just stood there staring.

More tears were coming out now. A painful sob ripped from my throat and I hoped the howling wind was loud enough to conceal it. My petite body was trembling from the cold and also from the emotions raging inside me. Fear now coursed through my veins. How will everyone else react when they find out, what do I do now that it’s over? Everything I knew for the past few months was now being ripped away from me. I decided that I had enough of him wasting more of my time and turned on my heel.

I was almost to the door when I heard him clear his throat. My hand paused in mid air as I was reaching for the doorknob. A glimmer of hope sprung out of the darkness of my heart but it was quickly buried again when the wind carried his words to me.

“I’m sorry Whitney,” he paused for a moment before continuing,”goodbye.”