Today marks five years since my Dad left this earth and his long struggle with serious illness. This day comes and goes so fast each year but I actually like it and mark it as a special day to celebrate and reflect on his life. Today I was thinking about some of the strange and funny things he used to do and some good memories I have treasured of him, which got me thinking on 3 things a I really appreciated about my Dad….and here they are.
I remember as I was growing up, Dad would always take the time to soak up his surroundings. Especially outside, commenting on the smell of a flower, the songs of birds singing, the way the wind blew, the colours of the sunsets. Even the laughter of his family, the intricate melody of music playing on the radio, or the words of a poem. He so often took time to stop and contemplate, appreciate, and capture the simple, everyday things in life that we so often take for granted. I admit sometimes it annoyed me and I often wished he wouldn’t be so slow, but looking back now, it’s a quality I appreciate he held, and by example, has taught me to do the same. Actually, it’s one of my favourite things to do. Stop, breathe in the moments of each day and be thankful for all that is around me, and I believe it’s a quality that is enriching to your life.
If anyone who knew my Dad is reading this, you would know all about his sense of humour and how dry, hilarious and quite often inappropriate it was. Ok, so a lot of people probably didn’t understand it or get it, but there were moments he had us in roars of laughter, and if he joined in laughing with you it was all the more better. He had this deep, light-hearted chuckle, where his eyes would literally sparkle, and it filled the space with the warmest joy, making you feel home. It wasn’t just his jokes and comments, it was often his actions and the things he did that were sometimes so beyond belief that captured what a deep well of humour lay beneath the surface. In the midst of his deep struggles, he never lost his humour and I appreciate that so much. Infact, his humour was one thing we held onto in the early days after his death and through his funeral. He even had us cracking up around his coffin when we went to see him before his cremation. Seeing him laying there so peaceful reminded us of the days when we would often try and sneak past him at home thinking he was sleeping. Truth is, he was very good at sussing us out and would often jump out on the bed and yell ‘BAAAH’ at us, sending our hearts into extreme palpitations. It was almost like he was about to jump out of the coffin, yelling BAAAH!!
Lastly, my Dad was bold. He was so bold sometimes it made me cringe. He met and knew so many people because he wasn’t afraid to step out and be vulnerable. He took risks, made friends with strangers, and no doubt made more of an impact than we will probably ever know. He wasn’t one to hold back, and I look back now and see his boldness as something I can learn from. While I may never place my hand on a stranger’s inner thigh while making a joke on a seat in the main street, I sure hope I will be bold in this life and not hold back when I need to take a risk.
So in honour of Dad…the only Huggy Bear…the bold, hilarious, soaker of the simple things. I’ll see ya later 😊