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Oh Bittersweet Father’s Day

In the last twelve-ish years since my Poppa passed away I have felt any and all emotions you can imagine surrounding Father’s Day. The first several chapters of the book I started to write of a life without my Poppa I would lock myself in my room and fall into my own pit of sadness and cry until that pit was full. Then I would instantly feel as though I was drowning and I’d never catch my breathe.

I wanted him here more than anything in this world. I thought I needed him here to celebrate a day dedicated to the best dads out there. My entire body ached because he wasn’t here to watch the Waltons with me snuggled beside him on the couch.

The next few chapters I turned angry. I was hateful and jealous that others got a lifetime to share amazing memories with their Poppa and here i was just starting to live my own life and I didn’t have him to lean on or call for random advice.

I wanted to be able to pick up the phone and hear him say “yellowww” and “Dez, Dez, Dez.” While I giggled and said “Poppa, Poppa, Poppa.” I avoided people and places where I would see happy families because I felt like I didn’t have one.

Turning to new, fresh, blank pages I slowly let myself join in on Father’s Day with my husband and his family. I knew his Pops was such an amazing man and we were lucky to have him to celebrate. I was okay with celebrating him for my husband but I still had those flickers of anger and sadness.

It just wasn’t fair.

Today, in this moment though I feel like I’ve started to write a new book. A book full of healing and self discovery. One that reminds me and everyone else that even though time may be cut shorter than we would like we have been blessed to have that time with those we loved.

I had eighteen incredible years with a man who loved me like no other. A Poppa who wasn’t perfect but wasn’t afraid to admit his faults and wrongs. A Poppa who showered me with love and didn’t hesitate to discipline me or show me tough love when I needed it. A Poppa who pushed me to always be a better version of myself. A Poppa who beamed with pride when he talked about his baby. A Poppa who held my hand on the darkest of days and joined me in every celebration. A Poppa who was courageous and brave and fought as long and as hard as he could to be here for just one more day. & a Poppa who wanted and loved that I always had others in my life who loved and supported me; people I could turn to when I couldn’t turn to him.

I have come to celebrate Father’s Day for not just the amazing Poppa that I was blessed with but for all of the men I have in my life; the ones who have helped raise me, love me and guide me. & the ones I have had the pleasure of watching raise and guide the next generation to be amazing, kind and hard working littles.

I have “adopted” dads, and “second” dads and “bonus” dads. Friends dads who have helped me when I needed it the most and ones who have been a voice of reason. Former teachers who have loved me as their own and strangers I met at the local club who have turned into family.

I write this today with a smile on my face and love in my heart because I have been so incredibly blessed in this lifetime to have not only one of the best Poppa’s around but to also be blessed with an army of men (& their families) who have loved me without hesitation or obligation. & I know my Poppa is beaming down and so thankful that I will never have to walk through this life alone. ♥️

Happy Father’s Day to all the men I know and love. I can not imagine this story book without all you characters(🤪) who have helped me write a fairy tale to be told and retold time after time.

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