Yesterday would have been my dads 85th birthday. I still miss him. I was 21 when he died (Oct. 30,1977), he was only 55. He missed so much, we missed so much. But he did get to see his first two grandaughters, who are both now in their 30's and fantastic mothers, wives and women. One of the last photos taken of him was at my sisters house holding the "baby" and next to him was my mother holding the "other" baby. They had not spoken in years until that day. It was a monumentous moment and forever in my minds eye and in my heart. I've always felt that if it were not for my mothers drinking, they'd have never seperated. My father loved her to the moment of his last breath. I wish I could have found someone to love me like that. I learned many things from him and honestly I always knew how much he loved me. Being the middle child of five, I was forever feeling torn. He knew that. He knew my struggles and my insecurities, me weaknesses and my strengths. My dad always had a way of making me feel special. I think I got some of his creative talent too. A WWII veteran, born to Italian Immigrants, he came home from the war to help his parents in their store, he made the displays for their store windows. He ended up being a Window Dresser for the Liquor industry. My dad always had a way of encouraging those tendencies in me. He'd buy me little kits of things to make. I remember one kit was a paint on velvet Pansy Flower thing. When I had finished it he asked if he could take it, shortly after, I noticed that he had pined the velvet masterpiece to the inside of his car visor. The moment I saw that, I knew what he couldn't say but my heart was happy and I had proof that he loved me. He never spoke in words, he showed it in actions. I learned to pay attention to actions. Subtlties of people speak volumes.
I realize that I have spent a good portion of my adult life hiding the fact that I have a missing piece in my soul. The piece of me that has never felt truly loved. That comfortable, warm and confidence in the knowing that one special man loves me as much as my father loved my mother. Yep, I've pushed that way down. Far enough to keep it from ruining my day to day life. Time just keeps going by and that person just hasn't come. I continue to live my life for myself. Work hard to make it as good a life as I can. There have been lovers in my life, one I spent 15 years with, he never really loved me, it was all about him. But it gave me the chance to love, the chance to use what my dad had taught me and the gifts he gave me. There's something to be said about that I suppose.
There is no sadness, only wishes and wonders. I know my dad is in a better place. I believe in God. I believe in life and love. And thanks to my father, I believe in myself.