It's been a year to the day since my father passed away after a tough bout with lung cancer. A whole year already.
I still miss him and think about him every day. I miss our regular phone calls, especially the ones every Sunday night. I even miss all of the e-mails I'd get from him, many of them about things debunked as urban legends or on-line hoaxes months or years prior. Somehow these things, no matter how thoroughly discredited, would still somehow get to him, only to be sent immediately on to me and dozens of other people. He sent me several of them a day for years, and I eventually gave up trying to explain to him that some things that pop up on your computer just aren't true and really shouldn't be sent back out to everyone that you know.
I miss those stupid e-mails.
But what I really miss is the opportunities lost. There were so many things that we'd wanted to do together but for one reason or another, had put off. We never took his new motorhome on a get-away together. We never made that Alaska trip that we'd talked about for years. The timing just wasn't right any time we talked about such things. "There'll be another time," one of us always said. And then one day, there wasn't any more time. Suddenly he was too sick to do anything. And then he was gone.
I made as many trips back up to see him as I could in the last few months. That's why I got the airplane. But by then, we really couldn't do much more than sit around his back porch, or maybe go out for breakfast. I'd give anything for just one more week together down here at my place, drinking beer and playing cribbage on my deck as the fall colors change. Or just one more Tigers game. We never even went to their "new" stadium together. So many things left undone, and still so many things left unsaid, even though we both knew that the time was drawing near.
I love you, Pop. I never said that enough.
January 7, 1942 to October 2, 2012.