Again, it's been ages since I've blogged but I guess November gets the best of me. I lost two people who I love the most in November and it's so hard focusing on the positive when the grief is still so new. In time, it will get better.
We made it through the "Year of Firsts" with Dad, who died last November 15th. It was a rough year and actually, it still is but I really try to stay positive and remember he is here with me. All I have to do is think of him and I feel his presence. I know he will never leave me, nor anyone he loved.
In fact, we met with Elyssa's teacher last month and she told us that Elyssa had a guest at breakfast one morning. Elyssa was chatting and giggling with someone who no one else saw and so her teacher asked Elyssa who she was talking to. She replied, "Bubba!" then continued laughing. Her teacher said, "Tell Bubba it's time for him to go because it's time to get to class." Elyssa giggled and said goodbye to Bubba and went on her merry way. You just can't make this stuff up... especially because we are well aware of Elyssa's gifts. Besides, their bond will never be broken, just as his with any of his family. He loved us more than anything and we all knew it.
Things like that keep us going and make us smile. I know Dad wouldn't want us to wollow and be sad, especially since he always had a smile on his face and was such a happy man... well, he still is.
The other person we lost is my sister Kathy, Elyssa's mother. It's hard to believe it's been three years since we lost her. It was exactly three years today, but on a Thanksgiving. We will always remember that she died on Thanksgiving but thank goodness it falls on a different date each year so we can at least have that distinction that the anniversary of her death isn't always on Thanksgiving.
Kathy had a brilliant mind and although the last few years of her life were rough, she put Elyssa first. In fact, I know if it weren't for Kathy's hard work, Elyssa wouldn't be as high functioning as she is today. Kathy would say it was a group effort but really, it was Kathy who was proactive enough to get Elyssa into all the right programs.
I know for a fact that Kathy would never leave Elyssa willingly so God must have needed Kathy for a very special reason. She is also reunited with the love of her life, her first husband Sal, who died a couple of years before Kathy did.
I really don't focus on my Dad and Kathy's deaths but their lives. November is just the month that we lost them in the physical sense and that is the hard part. I would do anything for just one more hug from both of them but that will have to wait until we are together again. Until then... I will keep focusing on living my life, despite my health challenges, and raising that sweet girl, Elyssa, who was entrusted to me and my family. She's such a precious gift and I'm honored to be a part her life.
Most of all, I'm honored to have been a part of my Dad's and Kathy's lives. I can't imagine what my life would have been like without them. Two things death cannot take away, the love and the memories we share... and the love continues on and on if you leave your heart open, you will feel it.