This entry was written over a year ago while we were dealing with my dad having vascular dementia. I wanted to capture some thoughts and feelings that I was going through at that time. We since lost him to dementia, and I still feel that empty place in my heart. We think we are now on the dementia journey again with my mom, and I am now trying to deal with those feelings.
I didn't know if I wanted to post this blog when I originally wrote it, but now I feel I want others that are going through this journey to know that they are not alone.
I know that you are still around, but I miss who you were. I miss having those talks about everything and anything. I miss putting my head on your shoulder and just sitting beside you.
You were there for me during a lot of the roller coaster that I have gone through in my life. You were there when I faced some rotten challenges, but you were always there for me to lean on. You taught me how to stand on my own and deal with things, but I knew you were always close behind me, being my support.
You walked me down the aisle on my wedding day and made me feel very special. You have always treated me like a daughter and never a step-daughter. I remember you saying that you would never be our father, but you wanted to be our dad. I can honestly say that you have been my dad and will always be.
You have learned to tell me that you were proud of me, and I remember some calls when I told you and mom something and I heard you yell “Congratulations.” Hearing you tell me you were proud of me was very important because I always wanted to make you proud. I promise that I will continue to make you proud of me no matter what. Even now when I talk to you on the phone and tell you something that I have done, I hear in your voice how happy you are even if you don’t really understand or remember what I have said.
You picked me up when I was down and taught me how to handle all of those challenges and become stronger for doing that. I know that life has been a challenge, and now you are dealing with some major challenges of your own, but I want you to know that I will always love you and am there for you to lean on.
I really miss who you were, and I wish I could get that person back, but I know that I can’t. I do know that no matter what happens, you have been my dad, and I am proud to be your daughter.