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Death sucks

Tomorrow you will be treated to an account of my pre-surgical anxiety (I know, be sure to tune in for that super fine treat), but today I’m dealing with the other aspect of my life that made 2009 such a fucked up year. A year ago today my father died. He was a brilliant guy. A painter, jeweler and sculptor who never had any commercial success, but still made art nearly every day of his life. He was the person in my life who most understood the strange combination of cynicism and whimsy and love of this earth that forms the core of my personality. Doubtless because I got it from him.

By the time he died, it was a relief. He’d been suffering for a while. And I’d been worried about him for years, constantly plotting how to convince him to let me make his life easier. I’d always planned to force him to come live with us when we had kids. He was too proud to let me take care of him unless he gave something back, and I figured child care could be the trade that might finally convince him to give up his back-breaking job. It breaks my heart that I never got the chance.

It breaks my heart that my notional kids will never meet him. It breaks my heart that I may never see him looking out at me from my child’s face.

I’m told you don’t get over death, you just integrate it into your life. So far it feels very much un-integrated. Let’s hope year two feels better. Thanks for reading.

19 Comments Post a comment
  1. What a great picture, Bunny. I've never lost a close family member before (*knocks on wood*), so I can't even begin to understand what the loss of a parent feels like. I know I've said it before, but I'm very sorry for your loss. I hope like hell that you see a lot of him in your future lil' ones–if not in their genetics, then most definitely in the way that they create and live in this crazy world. 'Cause all of that is in you, and you're gonna show 'em how it's done, babe. P.S. I'm ready for tomorrow's pre-surgical nuttiness. Bring it.

    April 21, 2010
  2. i'm so sorry bunny. i hope one day, you can start looking forward to this day, as a day to reminisce over all the great memories of your dad and your experiences together. i love this picture of you two – you look so content and happy.i'm hoping that you see your dad in your future kids and that he'll live in in that way. if not physically, i'm sure his personality will at least shine through somehow. sending you a great big *hug*, and for your sake, i hope saturday (day after surgery) comes sooner than later so that you can start healing :o)

    April 21, 2010
  3. Bunny, your dad looks like he was an amazingly cool dude in that picture. I am so sorry that you lost him so young, that he won't meet your children. What a devastating year you've had. I'm in awe of your strength.Sending you good vibes for your surgery. If the universe *is* a place of balance, then you deserve some success right about now.

    April 21, 2010
  4. ASP #

    So sorry about your Dad. He does look like an extra cool dude in this picture. Sending lots of hugs your way today. ♥

    April 21, 2010
  5. JB #

    Nothing I can add that wasn't said elegantly above me, but thinking about you and trying to siphon off some of your anxiety (I have capacity, built up through years of developing tolerance, dude).

    April 21, 2010
  6. Losing a parent so early really is unfair. It's true that you do integrate death into your life, but that's hardly any comfort as you remember him today. I'm really sorry he's gone. I do imagine that he will become quite a character in the minds of your children as they hear stories of grandpa bunny. I definitely don't have such a cool grandparent or parent for that matter. I know that your surgery will be sucessful (even if you don't believe me), and will be ready to give you some dorky jokes in your comments to cheer you up.

    April 21, 2010
  7. This sounds so incredibly rough– to deal with the anniversary of a loved one's loss at the same time that you prepare for surgery. My hope is that these two awful feelings in some way temper each other- so that grief for you dad puts surgery in perspective, and fear of surgery distracts you from grief for your dad.When I look at this amazing picture, I must admit that it makes me sad– not just because of your loss but because I see fatherly pride oozing out of my screen, and I want that for myself and E so badly. Your dad was so lucky!

    April 21, 2010
  8. JC #

    Awe, I'm so sorry Bunny. =( He sounds like a great guy, and that picture is so cool! ((hugs today))

    April 21, 2010
  9. Your dad sounds like the kind of guy who's absence in this world matters. I love that you can see him in yourself and I know that you'll pass those amazing traits onto the next generation. I'm very sorry that you had to go through such a devastating loss.

    April 21, 2010
  10. i'm back. just wanted to check in and hope that you're doing okay today. i've never lost a loved one, so i can't imagine what you're going through today, and won't even pretend to. have been thinking about you today though, bc what you're going through puts my woe-is-me feelings today in perspective. leslie said it best about the picture oozing of fatherly pride. i hope you blow up this picture and have it framed somewhere that does justice to it.sending you *hugs* and LOTS of luck for surgery tomorrow :o)

    April 21, 2010
  11. Yes it does. I'm sorry about your dad.

    April 21, 2010
  12. I'm so sorry for the loss of your dad. He sounds like a wonderful man. That picture is fantastic, Bunny. I am sure there will come a time when you are sitting around with your little ones showing them that picture and telling them all about Grandpa Bunny. (I know this because I live in the future. :)See…made you smile!)I hear you on the surgical anxiety. I freak out totally – even though I have only every had very routine, minor surgery. It is the anaesthesia that bothers me the most.Sending lots of hugs for both of the above.

    April 21, 2010
  13. I am sorry Bunny. I am sure your Dad is with you in your heart everyday. I will share some of your anxiety. Send it my way. I am already a hot mess.

    April 22, 2010
  14. I'm so sorry you've had this loss. I'm wishing extra hard for the universe to cut you a break already.

    April 22, 2010
  15. I'm just reading this now. What a brilliant photo. You look like two people each marching to your own beat, whose beats make a beautiful kind of sense to each other. Makes sense that he's an artist. Makes sense as far as you, too, because there is clearly a lot of that in you, you fabulous-doing-science lady. You've dealt with a lot lately. 2009 was indeed a year fucked up beyond all reason:( I'm so sorry.

    April 22, 2010
  16. Ah bunny. I am so sorry. What a year it's been.I raise my glass to you and your brilliant and much-loved Dad.

    April 22, 2010
  17. So sorry to hear about your dad. But like others have said, even though your future kids won't know him as him, they will know him in you. And what he passed on to you, both genetically and through his love, you can pass on to your children as well. I know that doesn't help right now–but maybe seeing him in your children can be a comfort in the future.I am so ready to hear about your pre-surgery anxiety…I am rooting for you!

    April 22, 2010
  18. The relationship with your dad, albeit shorter than you would have liked sounds a lot more meaningful and real than most other father/daughter relationships I know of. Although he isn't around to see you're future children he'll definately still be kept alive by your actions and your connection to him. Your children will know their grandad in a different way to you do but they'll still know they had a special and honorable man who inspired their mother in so many ways.Thinking of you (I know i'm late but I hope it still counts). x

    April 23, 2010
  19. I am so sorry for you loss, Bunny. What an incredible photo – one that I'm sure you will share with your future children. It sounds like you are very much keeping his spirit alive and I'm sure he lives on through you. Good luck today, hope everything goes well and the recovery is speedy.

    April 23, 2010

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