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25 Comments

  1. asraidevin
    August 31, 2012 @ 1:11 am

    All loss just really hurts. Take care of yourself *hugs* Sorry for your loss.

    Reply

    • Kristy K. James...Living, Loving, Laughing
      August 31, 2012 @ 4:21 am

      Thanks, Asrai. This is the 9th anniversary, so it’s been awhile. I just think about it a lot this time of year, and some things stand out more each time it rolls around. 🙂

      Reply

  2. colinfalconer
    August 31, 2012 @ 8:06 am

    Beautifully written, Kristy. What you say is exactly right. There is no lucky way or good way to every say goodbye
    .

    Reply

  3. Emma
    August 31, 2012 @ 8:58 am

    I would be devastated if one of my parents passed away – it’s something I can’t even think about. Hope you get to spend some time with your family today and over the weekend remembering your Dad.
    Thinking of you.
    Emma.

    Reply

    • Kristy K. James
      August 31, 2012 @ 1:43 pm

      Thanks, Emma. I’m not sure what we’re doing, if anything this year. Mostly I’m just distracting myself, which is what I almost always do. 🙂

      Reply

  4. Natalie Hartford
    August 31, 2012 @ 9:46 am

    My heart goes out to you Kristy. It’s been 21 years since my Dad passed in a car accident and I can say to you, that I really get where you are coming from. 9 years is a long time but it’s also a blink of an eye.
    Sometimes it feels like he’s been gone forever and sometimes it feels like he was just here yesterday. Some days it doesn’t hurt as much and I don’t think of him as often or miss him as terribly…and some days, I think my heart is breaking with pain and angst.
    But it does get easier with time. I think we get more accustomed to the ebb and flow of the grief so it becomes easier to manage but it never goes away entirely. Anniversaries, holidays, and birthdays are all difficult. No matter how many years pass. It seems like people move on with their lives and forget that a piece of your heart is broken in a million pieces…they think it’s behind you when it’s always around you. So support can sometimes be hard to find…and that sucks! I think reaching out, like you are now, is the most wonderful thing you can do. It lets people know that you need support and it also helps others, in similar shoes, know they aren’t alone.
    And no you aren’t lucky! The death of a loved one, especially a parent, whether you know it’s coming or it happens in an instant, is horrible. You had the chance to say goodbye and get those last moments in but had to watch him be ravaged by disease. I didn’t get the chance to say goodbye or cherish that last hug or the final “I love you” but I got to remember my Dad vibrant and alive. Like the band-aid ripped off quickly.
    Neither one is better than the other – they are just different. But loss and grief remain the same regardless.
    Know that today…you are my heart…my prayers…my thoughts and I am sending you a huge hug!
    I know…it’s hard! It sucks. It’s not fair.
    Take some time to remember him, his voice, his laughter and talk to him…talk to him like he’s sitting next to you. Tell him about some recent adventure, tell him how much you miss and love him, tell him how much he mattered to you…I bet if you close your eyes and listen to your heart, you’ll feel his spirit and soul wrap you in his arms of love!
    May you always feel his presence…may you always find his comfort…may you always know in your heart and soul that he may be gone, but your relationship with him is not dead – it’s just different.

    Reply

    • Kristy K. James
      August 31, 2012 @ 1:49 pm

      Thanks so much, Natalie. I’m sorry you lost your dad in an accident. As much as I hated what happened to mine, I know it would have been worse without any warning. I think what you try to do…what I usually do…remembering them ‘vibrant and alive’ is the best thing we can do…at least if we don’t want to drive ourselves insane. And I’ve talked to him on occasion…chewed him out for not getting a second opinion. 🙂

      Reply

  5. August McLaughlin
    August 31, 2012 @ 10:09 am

    I have chills, Kristy. Thank you for opening your heart to us—such a gorgeous tribute to your loving dad. Natalie is right: Your relationship continues. Thanks also for reminding us to savor every day and hold our loved ones close. I’m sending you huge hugs and comforting thoughts today, friend. Treat yourself really well, okay?

    Reply

    • Kristy K. James
      August 31, 2012 @ 1:53 pm

      Thanks, August. Yes, we should all remember what our loved ones mean to us…every day. 🙂

      Reply

  6. Tameri Etherton
    August 31, 2012 @ 2:09 pm

    Huge hugs to you, Kristy. Death is never ‘lucky’. No matter how much time you have, there is nothing lucky about it. What a beautiful post. Both of my parents are living, but I wonder how much time I have with them and seeing my dad decline a little each year hurts. So I take the time I can now to make sure they know how much I love them, how much they mean to me, so that when the time does come, I won’t have any regrets. Not just them, but everyone in my life that I love. Life is precious and far too fragile to take for granted. Thank you for the beautiful reminder.

    Reply

    • Kristy K. James
      August 31, 2012 @ 2:31 pm

      Thanks, Tameri. It is so important to remember how important our family and friends are…always. Because we just never know how long any of us have. I try to never forget that, and to make sure that there are never any hard feelings between me and anyone I care about…because I don’t want to have regrets when it’s too late to do anything about them. 🙂

      Reply

  7. Fallon
    August 31, 2012 @ 2:12 pm

    this hits me really hard right now. On Monday, it will be 6 years since my father-in-law died. We didn’t even know he was sick. Well, he’d been sick, but they thought it was pneumonia. We didn’t know it was cancer. He didn’t let us know(he may not have known either, but we think he knew there was something more serious than he let on). We didn’t know he had lymphoma until September 2. The next morning, we got the call that we needed to get to the hospital. And within the next 2 hours, he was gone. So, we got to say good-bye, but just barely. And no, it doesn’t make it any easier.

    I can still remember the last dinner we had with him. All of his kids and their families were there. What made it really hard was that our wedding was 13 days after he died. And it was exactly 1 year after I had met him. Now, we are going to be celebrating my son’s 2nd birthday on the same day. It’s a bittersweet day.

    I’m so sorry for your loss.

    Reply

    • Kristy K. James
      August 31, 2012 @ 2:35 pm

      Hi, Fallon. It’s nice to meet you. Thank you…and I’m sorry that you have a difficult anniversary coming up. It does get easier with time, but they’re never pleasant days to get though. I can’t imagine dealing with everything you did six years ago, but maybe having your son’s birthday on the same day will make things easier. 🙂

      Reply

  8. Coleen Patrick
    August 31, 2012 @ 2:30 pm

    Beautifully said Kristy. There’s nothing easy or lucky about any of it–I’m so sorry. Hugs.

    Reply

    • Kristy K. James
      August 31, 2012 @ 2:35 pm

      Thanks, Coleen. And you’re right…there isn’t. 🙂

      Reply

  9. Louise Behiel
    August 31, 2012 @ 3:19 pm

    Thanks for sharing your pain and your journey with us Kristy. I can’t imagine how hard it must have been to lose him like this. My dad is gone too, but it’s a totally different experience. I rarely think of him and hardly ever miss him. More often i miss what might have been or the illusion I created. take care of yourself. be gentle and know you are loved. Hugs.

    Reply

    • Kristy K. James
      August 31, 2012 @ 7:09 pm

      Thanks, Louise. I’m sorry things aren’t what they should be with your memories. Sometimes the things that should have been are harder to deal with than we might think. 🙂

      Reply

  10. Karen McFarland
    August 31, 2012 @ 3:24 pm

    Dearest Kristy,

    Can there be anything else more difficult than the loss of a loved one? Whether we know about it ahead of time or not, the fact remains there is a huge hole in our hearts where that special someone used to occupy. As with any wound, it takes time to form a scab and heal. But when picked on by many fond memories, they can fester and the healing process starts all over again. I wondered for years why death was so difficult to accept and assimilate. It didn’t sit well with me. It didn’t make any sense. Why are we forced to suffer through this consequence? It’s sheer torture. Then it dawned on me. Were we really meant to deal with the finality of death? Is it really supposed to be a natural process? If so, then why is it so difficult for us to accept? These questions helped me to come to grips with the death of my father and other friends I’ve lost over the years. But you’re right, it takes time. Yet, do we really ever get over it?
    I sincerely hope that your memories of your father will bring you some comfort knowing how much he loved you and the rest of your family. He sounds like he was a very gentle man. 🙂
    {{Hugs!}}

    Reply

    • Kristy K. James
      August 31, 2012 @ 7:18 pm

      Thanks, Karen. Those are some good questions. I think death is all a natural part of living…but it’s one of the most horrible parts of it. I suppose it wouldn’t be so bad if we didn’t love the people we lose. But the alternative…to not love anyone so we don’t feel that pain, would probably be worse. Do we ever get over it? I don’t think so. I think we just have to accept what our new reality is, and deal with it. Our minds (and hearts!) couldn’t take that degree of pain forever).

      Hmm…I’d never really thought of Dad as a gentle man, but I guess that would fit…sometimes. Mostly he was just a good, decent, loving guy. Not the most intelligent on the planet, certainly flawed, but I’d never have wanted a different father. 🙂

      Reply

  11. extension128
    August 31, 2012 @ 5:14 pm

    Really powerful, moving piece, Kristy. Cancer may take the ones we love, but it can’t touch of memories of them.

    Steve

    Reply

    • Kristy K. James
      August 31, 2012 @ 7:19 pm

      Thanks, Steve. You’re right…we always have our memories. And after a while, the good ones stand out more than the sad ones. 🙂

      Reply

  12. mj monaghan
    September 4, 2012 @ 4:04 pm

    Can’t ever replace our loved ones, can we? Especially our mothers and fathers, whether biological or not. I feel your pain, my friend, even though both of my parents are still alive. My wife lost both of her parents decades ago.

    I don’t know if you saw the post I did on MLB’s father (whom I never had the privilege of even meeting).
    http://www.mjmonaghan.com/2012/06/15/letter-fathers-day/

    I hope you had a great labor day, Kristy, and warm thoughts of dad.

    Reply

    • Kristy K. James...Living, Loving, Laughing
      September 4, 2012 @ 8:38 pm

      Thanks, MJ. It was a relaxing day around here (except for figuring out the plot for a new book, lol). And I did read that post, MJ. It was a very touching tribute to your father-in-law. Sounds like he was a wonderful father to your wife. 🙂

      Reply

  13. Missed Connections…can you spot the fake? – Natalie Hartford
    September 17, 2012 @ 6:02 am

    […] James post on the 9th anniversary of her father’s death was poignant and touching. Share this:TwitterFacebookStumbleUponPinterestEmailTumblrLike […]

    Reply

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