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By , lalala, WV
One of my favorite memories with my dad is the day when I ran into the house and jumped into his arms as he lifted me up. I remember feeling as if I was the luckiest girl in the world. He loved me more than anything and now I know that. He showed it all the time in the little things that he did, I just didn’t see it before.

My dad was big on anything that considered us being outdoors. He loved boating in the Owyhee Reservoir. It was with-out-a-doubt his favorite place to be. Now I know why he had so much passion for that Reservoir. It was a stress reliever to him, something that took the insane world and shoved it away for just a while. I used to love crunching myself up into a little ball and sitting in the tiny cabinet under the steering wheel, while the boat floated over the water. When I was in the tight, cramped position the only thing running through my mind was the constant sound of the water splashing up against the bottom of the boat and the light roar of the engine. It was a soothing and relaxing sound that would put me to sleep every single time.
My dad had the best taste in music. It took me a while to realize that. He listened to Pink Floyd. I remember so clearly, running around in the boat that was stored in his shop while Pink Floyd was playing. I was frightened of Pink Floyd, their music scared me. But listening to it now just brings back memories that I’m afraid of forgetting. Singing those meaningful yet confusing lyrics brings the tears, because of the way my dad used to sing them. He used to sing in the car on the way to Owyhee all the time. I guess my brother loved it, because he seemed to take that trait with him. I love riding in the car with my brother for that reason.
My brother had a really difficult time when my dad took his own life. He was a lot older than I was and much closer to my dad than me. In a way I’m jealous of the time he spent with my dad, time that I will never get to experience. He has many more memories than I do. I was just too young to remember all that I want to. But even though my brother went through such a rough patch in his teenage years, he turned out to be a truly amazing person. He’s someone who no matter what, I know he’ll always be here for me to talk to. He’s the only one who really understands.
My dad would always lie on the couch and watch the football games. He used to lay there with his eyes shut tightly and say: “I’m not sleeping, just resting my eyes.” But we all knew that he would soon doze off into a dreamland where everything seemed better. Little did we know, this dreamland would soon be a place where he would be permanently.
He always told me to run into his bedroom and snatch his pillow and he’d time me. Of course I loved this, until I realized he just made up a number when I came back. Usually a low number to make me feel just that much faster. So when I grew up and didn’t fall for that trick anymore, instead he would just threaten to fart in my face if I didn’t run to get it!
When I was two years old my mom and dad got a divorce. I don’t have a single memory of them together.
Later on, my dad found someone. My dad seemed to love her, though when I grew older I never realized why. I still don’t, in fact it confuses me every time I think about it. She hated me and showed it… when he wasn’t around. Today, my step mom still hates me. She will never call and tell me about family get-togethers, because she wants my aunts and uncles to feel as if I just don’t want to be a part of the family anymore. She took everything my father left behind. I don’t have a single item of his. I guess being his child wasn’t enough to receive anything.
My dad took his life on March 13th, 2006. I was in fifth grade. The last time I saw him was when he was so stressed that even me, at 11 years old, could tell. He was in the process of selling his trailer for extra money. I remember being depressed because I loved camping in that trailer. When I asked him why he was going to sell the trailer that we, as a family, loved his response was “moneys tight right now sweetie.” I just didn’t understand.
At that time I loved gymnastics. It was my thing. It was the place that took my mind off of everything else, and I was actually good at it. I wasn’t very good at anything else, so I liked being able to do tricks that everyone was jealous of. The last time my dad saw me perform my gymnastics moves, was about a month before he took his life. He came and watched me the entire day and I barely even got the chance to talk to him at the end. It was just enough time for him to give me a hug, a job well done and tell me how much he loved me.
The day that my dad committed suicide I was already sick. I was lying on the couch watching the news and I felt so comfortable just spending time with my mom. It was like I was being showed what life was like at home when I was usually at school. I liked it. So when the phone began ringing loudly I was never expecting what was about to be said. I remember like it was yesterday, the caller ID popping up on the TV screen, covering the news ladies face, telling me that it was, in fact, my dad’s number that was calling. I couldn’t think of a reason why my dad would be calling at this time unless something horrible had happened. My mothers crying proved my depressing theory. A few seconds after my mom picked up the phone, she placed her hand to her head and starting crying. It was the first time I had ever seen my mom cry. She leaned back against the couch and told whoever it was “thank you.” When she hung up all she kept saying was “I’m so sorry. I’m so sorry.”
When my step dad came home with my brother, Chris, and my step brother, Luke, who had been sophomores at the time, I kept wondering how they would take it, especially Chris. When he did hear the news, it was like he hadn’t heard correctly. He was astonished.
The day my dad committed suicide I remember thinking how long that night would be. I remember knowing I would cry, alone, which was what I liked. But when I finally came downstairs to make my bed on the couch, I was more worn out than I had ever thought. I fell asleep in an instant. I think that was my dad giving me a break. I do remember my dream that night though. It went a little something like this: Everyone in my family began committing suicide because they couldn’t live with the pain from my father’s death. I was the only one left. I felt more alone than ever, but I kept on living life because I knew it was what my dad would have expected of me.
4 days later, my dad’s funeral came around. By that time I was still in an immense amount of denial. Of course I knew that my dad had taken his own life and he wouldn’t be with me anymore, but for some reason it was just way too much to take in. At the funeral my little sister, Natalie, sat on my lap. I remember listening to every guest share their stories about my dad. Most of them were stories I had never heard before. Some were funny, and some were sad. But no matter what it was about, every story explained my dad in an instant.
Today, my biggest fright is thinking that the memories that I live off of will soon vanish into thin air. I don’t want to forget his voice and especially not the love he had for me. So when the memories become less and less clear, I force myself to remember, because I could never go through life without him. Even if it is only the memories that hold me together.





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mudpuppy said...
Aug. 10, 2010 at 5:44 pm
I'm sorry for your lost, I'm very close to my dad too and wouldn't cry my eyes out of anything were to happen to him. :(
 
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