Valentine’s Day….It is one of the most emotionally charged days. Some love it and go over board with the chocolates, flowers and cards. It is a big day for engagements and even weddings. For others, especially some who might not have a significant other in their lives, they dread this day. But not because they don’t have a “sweetheart” to give them the fancy chocolates in the heart shaped box. For some it is a reminder of loved ones gone too soon. But maybe, just maybe we can take that pain and turn it into something truly LOVING, such as a written tribute. Like today’s amazing Guest Blogger. Lindsey is a lovely friend from Dublin who is beautiful, bright and funny. But she has a deep well of emotion, and for good reason. Today is her father’s birthday. However, as for many years now, she won’t be able to celebrate with him in this earthly life. So until we all meet again, she honors him and of course most of all, continues to love him and all her departed loved ones….
Love…. for such a small word it sure does pack a punch, right? There are so many different kinds and no one love is really the same for anyone, is it? The love you have for your partner, the love you have for a pet or the love you have for your children. We all know that consuming feeling of love you get in the pit of your stomach. The flutters in your heart when it’s filled with utter joy. But there’s one love, for me anyways, one that I’ve had with me since the first moment I took my first breathe in this world, and that love comes from the people who gave me life, I call those my parents.
Growing up my dad was my superhero. Did he wear a cape? God no. He was more a socks and sandles kind of man anyways…. who better than to copy then JC himself…. well I never said he was a fashionista. But was he better than superman, batman and Ironman combined? 100%! He was my sun moon and stars. And as you can see by now, I’ve said ‘was’ more than once with this story. This is because where there is love, heartbreak can soon follow. And for me that was losing my hero at the age of eleven. I thought my world had ended. And in a way, it had. The world before that moment didn’t exist anymore, and never would again. But I had one person there to help me through this loss, and it took me longer than I care to admit to see her. But this person was my beautiful mam, Noleen.
And again, here we are with the ‘was’ business. And this time, it’s because at the older age of thirty this time, I lost my best friend, my better half, my mother. I thought I’d never felt pain like losing my dad as a child, but I was very wrong. He was my sun moon and stars, yes. But my mam was my eclipse.
When my mam died, all I could see was darkness. I felt numb. I constantly felt like I was underwater and I was just waiting to be saved from drowning. I’ve often tried to explain it and the best I can do is say that it’s like the feeling everyone in Harry Potter gets when the dementors are around?? Like all my joy, my reason for living, was just gone. So how am I here, functioning, nearly three years later you ask. How am I functioning? I’m here because their love has me here. I’m here because they put me on this planet, and their love for me made me who I am. I look back on our times of love and laughter, and on the days I can’t breathe with grief, it makes it so I can see them again.
I think of my dads love for Manchester United and my mother’s love of King crisps. I think of the love that my dad and i shared for going the cinema together and how my mam and i loved to crash out every Saturday watching the tv shows we would record during the week. I think of how I loved seeing my dad collect me from school, and knowing we were about to sneak off and do something we would try hide from Noleen. And I think of the times I sat by Noleen’s bedside in the hospital, and we laughed so much at the most random stuff that we would make each other cry tears of laughter.
As much as my story has heartbreak and many a tear has been shed, equal amounts has been shed with tears of laughter and joy with parents like mine. Like my dad falling asleep on the sofa with his mouth open, and we would use his mouth as an aim to get grapes into it. Or with my mam, once she started laughing like Janice in friends to the point where I swear she was her double. These memories are worth the heartbreak. These memories and their love is what gets me through those darkest days. Without them, I wouldn’t be who I am today. Without them, I wouldn’t be here today. I owe them more than I ever realised. And to me their love ripples through me everyday as they walk by my side. I may not see them, but i always know they’re not far.
I love you both more than yesterday, but not as much as I will tomorrow
Love, hugs and kisses,
Thank you Lindsey for sharing your LOVE for your father on his birthday and your mother too. Unless someone has gone through a similar situation, they may not understand the depth of pain. However, it is through sharing our feelings in a blog post such as this, that even people we haven’t met can gain empathy. And through that they might be able to soften their hearts for their own parents who are still alive today. So thank you for your courage to write this touching tribute. I for one believe your parents are together celebrating this day in heaven and are filled with pride for YOU their beautiful and devoted daughter!