You died on a Monday.
9pm the night before, my beautiful wall clock began to chime. I looked over at it and instead of my usual satisfying look, I had a look of despair. Or maybe it was grief. I don’t know. Less than five minutes later, my phone rang.
By the tone in her voice, I knew something was wrong. Ultimately, Cancer kicked your ass. I even warned you not to give up!! I’m angry that you were lying to people about what was actually happening to you. I’m angry that you didn’t allow the people around you to help. Until it was too late.
There were a few last minutes things first thing Monday morning that Sis and I had to do, but were on the road by 12:15p. It was 12:20p, and Sis and I had just gotten on the freeway to start our 14.5hr drive to see you when we got the call you had passed. We weren’t happy by any means about the reason we were going up, but we were determined to make the best of our road trip. Unfortunately, that changed all of it.
The moment you hear THOSE words come out of someone’s mouth, it changes you. It changes everything about what you’re doing in that moment. Although I had come to terms with the fact that those words were coming, I kind of had hoped in the back of my mind, that you’d wait until we got there. I knew it wasn’t likely, but I still hoped.
RJ is pretty upset. The X says he cries a lot. I can’t blame him. I cry a lot too. Especially when I run across photos like this one where you’re teaching Ryan how to make garlic bread. I hope he never forgets how to make that.
I have so many questions I want to ask you. So many things that don’t make sense about the stories I’ve been hearing. I just wish I could talk to you one more time. Just once. I’d even listen to you tell me the story about those damn raccoons again.
I love you. All those times as a kid when I said I hated you, I was lying. I was too ashamed at those early ages to admit that I loved you more than I loved my own dad. I was made to feel guilty about caring for you, and I’m sorry I wasn’t able to see that until I was older. You were the male rock in my life. You taught me so much about life, and I can’t even begin to tell you how many of the things I do every single day, are fashioned after what you taught me. And every time someone leaves a light on in a room that isn’t occupied, I’ll continue to cuss under my breath in your honor.