My dad was a truly remarkable man. I wasn't aware of it while he was alive. I didn't take notice of what an amazing person he really was. To me, he was just Dad. Dad the Firefighter. Dad the Skydiving Instructor. Dad the Mechanic.
He died in an aircraft crash in March this year. The plane he was in was a skydiving aircraft; the plane had 2 tandem instructors, two skydiving passengers and a pilot on board. None survived.
I'm 25, and moved out of home a year and a half ago, 1000km away from my parents, to a different city for a new job. I have never lived out of home before. I was sad to say goodbye to my parents, but felt ready to leave home and start my life independently. My relationship with my father had been strained at times; we had very similar personalities in some ways, and butted heads quite a bit. He could be very tough and strict at times, and I'm ashamed to say there were times during my childhood when I felt like he didn't love me at all. He never told me (or my sister) that he loved us while we were younger. Looking back, it was the things he did for us that showed he loved us. But when you're a kid, it's not so much what you do but what you say that makes an impact. This continued into my adolescence, to some extent.. But all that changed when I left home. He would message and call me frequently, to make sure I was ok. Our conversations became much more pleasant and I genuinely felt like Dad & I had finally gotten to a place that I was happy with. I had the relationship with him that I always wanted.
Now it's all been taken away from me. The last time I saw him was 3 months before he died, on my birthday, which is a week before Christmas. I couldn't spend Christmas with my family, due to work. I feel so numb at the moment. I recognize my father isn't here anymore; that I can't give him one last hug, I can't tell him I love him one last time, I can't thank him for being such a wonderful father. Sometimes I cry, but for the most part I feel shut off from my feelings of grief, in a sense. I keep waiting for it to hit me in the face; to just double over in unbearable pain and never get up again. I'm worried what will happen when that time finally comes. If it does.
Isn't it funny how you don't recognize how much you love someone, or how important they were to you, until they're gone? I grew up thinking that my friends dad's were so much nicer than mine. Now when I look back I wouldn't have had my father be any other way. His firm, guiding had has molded me into the person I am today. I hold many of his beliefs and values dear, and wish I could tell him how much I appreciate everything he did for me, and how much I love him.
I feel lost. Talking to people makes me feel uncomfortable, because mostly they don't know what to say & it just gets awkward. I don't know what to do.