Friday, October 29, 2010

I'm Trying

It was one year ago this very morning that my dad died. He died right here in our house. The house we shared with him. He died surrounded by family, some of the people who loved him the most. It still hurts. There is not a day that has gone by that I haven't thought about him. Missed him. Wished with everything in me that he was still here. I never expected his death to be so brutally hard. It was. It is. Oh well.

The morning my dad died, I wrote. I'm sure this seemed and still seems odd to some people, that my father dies so I run to the laptop to blog about it. That wouldn't come anywhere near the truth, though. The truth is, I wrote about it because I was near meltdown. The kind of meltdown that felt like it would last forever and I might never find my way back to sanity. The kind of meltdown that screams, "Somebody do something before I die too!" So I did what I have always done since I was a kid when I hit imminent implosion. I wrote. This is my post from that morning.




My father died this morning. As I type these words, I choose to not believe them and yet they remain the truth. This has been a surreal day. One minute I am crying hysterically as I stand in my dad’s closet trying to hide my pain among his things. An hour later I am laughing like a fool as I tell my sisters we are going to have a difficult time finding someone to adopt three middle aged orphans. I am pretty sure my condition is close to what a normal person would call psychotic today. The truth is, I am broken.



Love is patient ~



Thank you, Dad, for loving me when I was unlovable, which was more often than I wish were true. Even when I rejected you, you never turned your back on me. You waited patiently for God to change my icy heart and He did.



Love is kind ~

Thank you, Dad, for teaching me what it means to be kind. Not the fake kind but the real deal kind. The kind that loves other people even when they don’t look like you, think like you or smell like you. The kind that remembers to treat others better than they might think they deserve and really mean it.


Love is not rude ~


Thank you, Dad, for showing me how to negotiate my way through this world without being a bully.


Love is not easily angered ~


Thank you, Dad, for being the cool head of reason more often than not throughout my life. You made the worst situations seem so much easier to walk through because you kept your cool, which always helped to calm the hot-head in me.


Love keeps no records of wrongs ~


Thank you, Dad, for forgiving me …. over and over and over again.


Love always protects ~


…. for saving me from myself so many times.


Love always trusts ~


…. for trusting me when I didn’t deserve it.


Love always hopes ~


…. For believing I would do great things someday.


Love never fails ~


…. For never failing to love me.


I'm not quite sure how I am going to face this life without you but I know God is not done with me yet. I love you ~ Marla


So here I am, one year later. I'm still not sure how to face life without him but I'm trying.


Charles F. Casas, my dad

34 comments:

Parsley said...

HUGS

Brian Miller said...

smiles.

tears.

hugs.

one day at a time.

thoughts for yout today...

Blasé said...

That says it all

Delirious said...

He is a handsome lad. It's nice to know that there is someone waiting for you on the other side :)

Far Side of Fifty said...

I am sorry for your loss. It is OK to write whatever you want..after all this is your room and you are in charge here! This is a lovely tribute to your father..:)

Mommy Lisa said...

What a handsome guy. My mother right now is kind of panicky as she is sure her mother does not have much longer....It keeps makeing me think about how I will feel when she and my dad are gone. :( Hugs.

luckydame said...

Thinking of you today. Sending a big hug your direction. Your father sounded like a wonderful person and I'm so sorry for your loss.

Prudence said...

I'm sorry Marla. It always hurts but as you probably know, as the years go by it gets easier to breathe.
We'll see them in heaven again, we'll meet up and introduce them, hey wait they probably have talked, well you can introduce me and I'll do the same!

Teresa - in the Middle Side of Life said...

That is a beautiful tribute to your dad. I'm sorry for your loss. My dad died 9/14/2005 and I still miss him, too.

I can only hope and pray that I will leave a similar mark/legacy for my children.

Monkey Man said...

Nearly 13 years later, I still miss my dad. It gets easier, but the hole is always there.

Matty said...

Wonderful tribute to a great man. I can see his qualities in you.

Sarah said...

All I can say is, your dad did a great job raising you.

Coby said...

There are tears in my eyes. What a beautiful way to honor your father.

Andrea said...

Uncle Charlie was always bigger than life. Still is. My heart is with you Marla. Love you!

Mrs4444 said...

Some people turn to the bottle; I will always turn to the pen/keyboard, too.

What a special father. I'm sorry you lost him. Thank you for linking this up.

J.J. in L.A. said...

(((HUGS, hon!!!)))

That was a wonderful post about your dad. He sounds like a very special person and the apple didn't fall far from the tree.

Karen, author of "My Funny Dad, Harry" said...

This is a wonderful post that I totally relate to. I wrote a whole book in my dad's memory when he died and started a blog about him and my memories (also blogged the story about my first cat when it died.) It's very therapeutic!

When reading this, it was just like reading about my dad. We were both very blessed to have had such good fathers!

Found you through Saturday Samplings.

(I tweeted it and marked it on Delicious and Stumbleupon.)

Kristen said...

That was beautiful! Thank you for sharing!

Emily said...

My dad died in 2003 and I still miss him so much. He was a wonderful person and liked by all. He never met my son but we do talk about his grandpa in Heaven and I have taken him to visit his grave site. I tell Tyler that Grandpa Joe is always watching out for him and that our two fish and two cats live with Grandpa Joe in Heaven and he is having a lot of fun with them.

It does get better. Death is worse on the living. Every father's day I blog about my dad and I think about him and talk to him all the time. I still feel very close to him.

So sorry for your loss.

Cher said...

We loved our handsome and fun Uncle Chalecko...Hugs Cher....Hey your dad was always good at public speaking too!

cher said...

He was always up for a roast or a toast....

Enchanted Oak said...

Well, I was sitting at my laptop the day my mom died, so you're not alone. I was writing poetry, as a matter of fact, as she was dying. Writers are always trying to find words for the things that happen. It's our job. Under stress, a painter paints, chefs cook, writers write. Although now that I think of it, my brother the heating and air-conditioning guy didn't run out and install any duct work that day.

Thank you for writing about your dad. I lost my dad 27 years ago when I was 28 and he was only 53. I still miss him. I'm glad you and I both had a father who loved us. I thought when my dad died that no one would ever love me again like he did. I actually said that to my mother. She said something crass like "Your father wasn't a saint" but then she wasn't dealing too well with her grief either. And the truth is, for me, the years have gone by and I have loved and been loved and my life is full of love, and I wish I still had my dad. I keep my pop alive in my head by noticing things about me or about life that remind me of him, or thinking, Dad would love this. He's never far from me. Heck, I'm his living legacy. So are the members of his family. He lives in all of us.

I guess what I'm saying to you is: You don't have to face life without him. You're not without him. His blood runs in your veins. The stuff he was made of lives on in his grandchildren, his great-grandchildren, but especially in you. Honoring him like you do in this post is part of how you keep him living with you. He's there in the flesh and blood of your own body and he's there in the spirit of your memories, and all of that is an important form of life.
Americans don't know how to think that way. Our culture uses words like "He passed away" and "He's gone on to his heavenly reward" or he's just dead and gone, period. Dust to dust and all of that. Many other cultures recognize that people live on, not just in some heavenly realm but here and now too with every heartbeat and every breath you take. Your love itself is your father living in you.

And I remember your crazy story about stocking the fish pond. (If that wasn't your story and I'm mistaken, pretend that you did buy a gazillion fishlets to put in some pond, say, back behind the barn.) Your father saw it all through your eyes and he laughed his butt off.

Look, I've written a book. Here's a hug: [[[Marla]]]

Enchanted Oak said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
gayle said...

Wish I could give you a hug!! I know exactely how you feel!!

Bel said...

you know mom,not to sound cheesy, but as i was reading what you wrote to grandpa on how he loved you I thought how you did the same with me when i lived with you!I am glad you told me he gave his heart to the Lord before he passed..we get to see his beautiful smile and dancing moves again! Love you!

Joanna Jenkins said...

My heart is with you.
xo jj

Kathy's Klothesline said...

Grief is hard and we all have to do it our own way. It has been a year since my son died and I am still hit with unexpected waves totally out of the blue ....

Vickie said...

Sorry we haven't talked in awhile. I talked to Jana yesterday and she reminded me of how much I miss you. I'm also sorry for your loss but happy that you have such strong feelings for your dad. Love is a strong thing! I love you.

Unknown Mami said...

I love you.

I can totally understand why you HAD to write that day.

Libbie said...

Marla! I am so sorry! I am sure there is still a big hole in your heart. There is nothing like a Daddy! I already worry about losing mine too. It hurts just thinking about it.

I LOVe how you took that verse & wrote about it. I know I would love your Dad becuae of the funloving girl he raised!

Thinking of you!!!

Lily Robinson said...

Marla, I have missed you! I'm so glad I came back today, to pass along a BIG SQUEEZY HUG! I, too, think of writing when I hurt. I came back to my blog after a long absence because we lost Buddy. That's just how I handle it. So, I guess when it's my dad's time, the friends out here in Blogville will be the first to know.

Love you, girl! (you're my sister from another mother)

Dawn said...

I'm sorry for your loss.

The post you did was just beautiful and heartfelt.

TechnoBabe said...

Dear Marla, I have been busy moving to our little teensy house and have missed some posts. This post caused me to cry, deep sobs actually. On one hand I am so happy for you that you had a chance to have a real dad, one you loved and you knew you were loved and then I also am so sad that because you did know that kind of dad love you hurt because he is not with you any more. I never ever came close to having that kind of dad so part of me is sad for me too. But by not having it I don't know what to miss. Hugs to you my dear.

Nancy C said...

I adore this. And you. I believe that God wrote this for you that day.