I didn’t know what real loss felt like. I had lost grandparents and great-grandparents before, but even though I did love them very much, they were not people who I would see or talk to daily, so even though it was difficult, I had no idea and was totally unprepared for what it was like to lose someone even closer.

I lost my dad on the first of January this year. At the time of writing this, it has been over two and a half weeks since it happened. If before it had happened, you had asked me what my reaction to something like that would be, I wouldn’t have known what to say. I may have tried to guess, but I wouldn’t have understood how much it would affect me.

One unsurprising thing that happened was a lack of sleep. The first night, I tried to go to bed around midnightish, but basically laid there staring at the celling until 2 or 2:30. I only ended up sleeping about an hour and a half. I ended going upstairs and sitting in front of a few episodes of Star Trek: Voyager until everyone else got up.

One thing I wasn’t expecting was being unable to eat. For the few days following, I barely ate anything. I’ve been told that it is a normal reaction, but still, it has been a weird sensation. Even two and a half weeks later, I am still not eating the same as before. I think this is one reason for the persistent exhaustion that I have had, especially after returning to work.

I have also been speechless when talking to a lot of people, and some of them have been the same when they talk to me. It’s not a bad thing, but I have gotten used to just sitting in silence with some people when I see them. It may seem odd, but it has been helpful to be with certain people, even if we don’t say much. When my best friend came to visit after it happened, we did talk a little, but the most comforting thing was just being able to sit with him, hug him, cry with him.

My dad was an amazing person who touched the lives of so many. That is evident by the unbelievably large amount of people who came to his memorial. He had so many groups of people who loved him, and I honestly don’t know how I am going to handle certain things in the future without him. I am going to miss him so much. I am disappointed that I didn’t get to talk with him about everything I wanted to, and the only way I can handle that thought is where he is now. I know that death isn’t the end, that he is up in heaven with his mom and with Jesus. So even though I miss him so much, I know I will see him again one day when I die, and that makes all this bearable.

I love you dad.

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