Two months since losing Dad

When I write anything I publish, I like to envision us in a boat, on a smooth luscious river where it’s velvety and steady, or seated together where I’m using decadent thick paint to tell a story in multiple colours, affecting textures across a canvas. But today, my quill is pointed and the ink is dark. Read at will, I mean with caution.

This post is a cathartic share about the loss of my dad, now that two months have passed. I would have journaled such emotion but I was somewhat lead to share this publicly. And if you know me, I always honour what I’m lead to do. If this blog subject isn’t your cup of tea, I welcome you back next time.

I cried the entire time I was writing this, but I’m angry – I’ll be honest. This is the first time in a long time I’ve had the space to cry it out a while, knowing I have tomorrow to deal with my puffy eyes and face. I trust that releasing some of the sadness through writing and tears will help.

It’s been about two months since my father passed away and to say that I’m “taking it hard” would be an understatement. I’m angry that he is gone and I’m angry that he won’t be part of my world anymore.

Of course I think about him all the time but I’m reminded of him a lot because I choose to. I now wear the watch he wore everyday when I was growing up. It is now on my wrist everyday without fail. Everytime I turn on my iPod I get a little choked because I flash back to when he gifted it to me as a graduation present from my spa diploma program. How did he know that I would need it? I didn’t at the time. I used it all the time when I had my boutique massage business. I also keep little keepsakes close to me and his telephone number in my mobile phone that I haven’t been able to delete.

It’s been almost 11 years since losing mom now but because she had been in so much pain for so long, I was able to deal with my grief journey from a different angle. Grief is never over but it morphs over time as everyone reading may or may not know. But with my dad, the shock and disbelief is still fresh and it’s the beginning of a very different grief journey. And this anger has hardened me into survival mode. But as I live in a new country, single and, only a month into my new position where I’m still training and learning, I’m overwhelmed and heartbroken.

I’m trying my best to reconcile my normal passion for life, while re-negotiating my reality in such a way I can feel more joy than pain. I’m carefully navigating grief, one tear at a time like it’s being squeezed through an eye dropper in order to survive everyday.

I haven’t had the space to build my relationship with Scotland yet which has made me nostalgic for France. Living in Paris wasn’t easy but I was certainly embraced quickly and I miss the life I created because my new existence here started with a deficit. I have a deep longing for: a glass of rosé (or three) at rue du regard and with the family that lives there and my favourite neighbours, a passionate tour at musee d’orsay or l’orangerie, some fries at Comptoir des arts, walks in Jardin des Plantes and in Jardin Luxumbourg, and anywhere really; to tea at Mariage Freres, ice cream at amazing spots, unlimited movies with my UGC card and, the list goes on.

When struggling, we long for the things we know best, I long for the things I know best.

I started a new job in hospitality, and as a manager. My dad is and was the oracle of this new chapter I have now embarked on and I can’t talk to him about it. That makes me so sad and again, so angry. I need his support and outside perspective, his genius and know-how.

I’m angry because he was supposed to come visit me in Scotland and then we would go on to Finland this year. We spoke about these plans just days before he passed and I told him that I had a rolling list of things I wanted to share with him, things to do and see. He would have loved it.

I know that with every adventure I take going forward, both of my parents will be with me in spirit but for fuck sake, it is not the same. Please excuse my language.

Where all this goes sideways lies with, “EXPECTATION”. The expectation that you have more time with someone, or of the people you know or of yourself. This triple threat super layered cake can lead to “DISAPPOINTMENT”.  Put that in a bowl, and what do you get? A harsh mix of sadness, anger, frustration, shock… This happens all the time in life whether you are walking through grief or not. But the salt tastes saltier when grief is in the mix.

I’m also angry because I have many decades in front of me to sit with the loss of both my parents at a young age and how profound that is. Sometimes I forget that they are both gone which is a cruel joke my mind plays on me. Loss is a journey and I know that – I think everyone does. But it doesn’t make it any easier. I wish it did.

Hopefully my next blog will be one of local adventure and bravery in reconnecting with the things that make me happy while enduring the road of grief paved in front of me.

Thanks for reading.

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10 thoughts on “Two months since losing Dad

  1. wow–what a beautiful, real, honest, riveting, vulnerable post. (and not in any way less interesting than your other travel-related blogs.) thank you for being so real and putting yourself out there. grief is not talked enough in our world – and it needs to be, so thank you. while i can’t pretend to know all that you are going through – or have all of the best or right things to say – know that you are loved, just as you are. maybe in our dreams we can time travel together to have a tea at place monge or a coffee on ile saint louis while live music beats sweetly in the background. ❤

  2. Ah Allison, my heart cries for you. Such a piss off!!!!! I know life isn’t fair but this really isn’t FAIR. I’m so glad that you are putting this into words for yourself but also for everyone else who has been through the death of people close to them as it speaks to us and also for those who have not had this experience so that they will remember when they are at their darkest hour how it was for you. There is no easy way though this, it’s just a painful slog. Although nothing can replace the love of your parents, do remember that that others love you and you are being held as best we can. xoxoxo Susan

  3. Dear Allison, Your deeply honest share is authentic nd beautiful, like you. It makes so sad to connect with the depth of your pain. Yes, grief is multifaceted, and for our closest friends and family, we never know what shape or form the process will take us on or into. Sharing this openly is a positive step on your healing path. What I have learned is that although each loss brings grief, it’s never the same in depth or pain. And, with time and many deep breathes, it does get better.
    I can honestly say that you are an extraordinary, sensitive and creative woman. Your dad was blessed to know you (as I am!) And, call you his daughter. Your relationship was wonderful, if you were making plans to travel together. Hold on to and be grateful for that, for many never experience that with their parents.
    You are in my heart and prayers. I’m am proud for all you have done and are doing. With every tear you release, you create new space for joy and healing in your heart. I love you Allison💗

  4. HI Allison, Read your blog today. So glad you wrote this and shared it. I hope your family reads it. It may give them a better understanding of how difficult this all is for you.it . It took courage to write this…. good for you. I wasn’t comfortable writing a reply for some reason but I wanted you to know that I read it. It was lovely and a rare bit of honesty that is rarely found now-a-days. Hope we can catch up again soon. Lots of love, Mary >

  5. Reblogged this on Ohhhwillow and commented:
    Allison perfectly depicts here the momentously infuriating ‘triple threat super layer cake’ that is the assumption of mortality. Expecting that we have limitless time with those we know, those we love and with ourselves, grief paves the way to a dislodged reality.

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