Things have changed since I lost my dad. Some much more notable than others. One of these changes is that on every evening, my sister and I exchange a ‘goodnight’ via text, even if we haven’t spoken at all that day. She lives in Edinburgh, I am a couple of hours south in Newcastle. I talk to my mum more often as, well, that is what mothers do. They phone for a catch up every other day and I greatly appreciate that now. Checking I have enough money and asking who the girls in my latest Facebook picture is.
My biggest regret I have after my dad died was not making him enough cups of tea. He was a true Englishman in this sense. In fact, I cannot remember a time in which he wasn’t on the couch gulping down a cuppa like it was going out of fashion. As he died young, (barely in his 60’s, I was 24) I was a typical son, saving my energy for my much needed procrastination. My dad, thankfully enjoyed being a dad and providing for me. How I wish I put as much effort in now and returned the favour.
Not that I didn’t, one negative aspect of losing someone close to you is that you overthink what you did not do and forget what you did do, a message very similar to the one I posted here recently in 151,600 people won’t see this today. I forget the times I did say I love you and the presents I bought, whilst feeling the overwhelming guilt that I have for failing to be such a good son every single day, as if I knew my fathers demise was around the corner. I was not a bad son, I like to think my dad was very proud of me. He said he was, however hindsight is a terrible thing. It is only when you lose someone so valuable, someone there from your literal day one, you know how empty it is without them and how you could have been better yourself. And when it is from day one, it is very hard to picture a life when they are no longer there that morning. When it is all you have ever known, anything else is very hard to grasp, yet this makes me try my hardest to grasp concepts that I cannot imagine. I know there are things I don’t know, people and things I will miss when they are gone, even if I don’t know how they will affect me. This is a beauty in its own right, and a mystery that keeps me inspired and trying to be the best person I can.