On March 2, 2015 [two years ago today] Dad departed this life for the eternal country club in the sky. We trust it’s divine, because members move heaven and earth to get there. Make the cut, and you’ll find yourself on a fairway to heaven. Stockpile your divots and you’ll find yourself halfway to hell.
When you lose a parent, life as you know it is forever changed. It leaves an indelible hole, but grief is the price we pay for love. Heartache is different for everyone, however, here are the lessons we’ve learned along the way.
1. A piece of your security blanket, safety net, and parachute vanishes into thin air.
2. The family dynamic changes when you lose the foundation.
3. When you lose a loved one in a family of four, a quarter of your heart is surgically removed.
4. One of us lost her way, one of us got fiercely angry. After two years, we’re just starting to get our heads on straight.
5. The raw anguish is unlike anything you’ve ever experienced. It will bring you to your knees.
6. Birthdays, special holidays, and the death anniversary loom over you.
7. You are reminded of your own mortality, and the indignity of getting older.
8. If you’ve only lost one parent, the fear of losing the other intensifies.
9. No matter what your age, losing both parents makes you an orphan.
10. You worry about how bruised your own children will be when our time is up.
11. You pretend you’re semi-normal even when it’s the farthest thing from the truth.
12. You have to make a conscience decision to move forward.
13. For every level of grief, there is a tier of joy.
14. You imagine that if you ‘pass go’ at the pearly gates, the rest of the ride is heavenly.
15. Try not to leave anything unsaid to your parents. There is never enough time.
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