Sunday, March 2, 2014

My dad.

Hang in there, this one is a long one.

 I can't believe it is already 2014. Already March, for that matter. Our little girl will be 6 months old tomorrow. She is already sitting up, refusing to stay on her tummy (always rolls off) and loving talking (babababababababa). She is such a sweet little spirit with a huge personality and has a little bit of an attitude already. I had no clue that babies could have attitudes at this age, but Penny is proof that they sure can. She is so fun and bubbly and keeps Scott and I entertained constantly. We love her so much and we are so grateful for her happiness and cuteness. :)

This year was really rough from the beginning, as many of you know. My dad, Randy Hohmann, passed away on January 21st. It was a real shock to everyone because we didn't know there was anything wrong with his health (we may have suspected it, but he always denied it). I got the phone call from the hospital in Rockford that he was in critical condition in the ICU, fighting cardiac arrest. The doctor kept telling me he was very sick but it didn't register that this was probably the end. I kept thinking he would pull through. After frantic calls to my twin sister Bre, my mom, and various family members, my brother Casey told me that what the doctor said didn't sound good. That is when it finally hit me that I would probably lose my dad. Casey was on his way to Rockford since he was closest when I got the phone call from Bre that my dad had passed. 

I don't think I've ever felt that much emotional pain in my entire life. I lost my grandmother when I was 16 which was extremely devastating (and still is), but somehow this was even more excruciating. No more phone calls, no more visits, no more hearing his voice. There are many things that go through your mind when someone you love so much dies--especially a parent-- and one of those things is guilt. I felt guilty for so many things... not calling him or visiting him more often and not telling him I loved him enough. I told him I loved him every time I would talk to him on the phone, but somehow that doesn't seem like enough when I can't do it anymore. It hurts so much that I can't ever hear him say "I love you, pudy" or "Give that little Penny kisses for me" in this life. I won't ever go fishing with him or listen to music from the 50s and 60s with him again. I can't ever spend countless evenings watching movies with him, laughing and telling him to go to sleep when he starts to snore half way through. No more over-an-hour talks on the phone, talking about anything and everything. Through his big, warm hugs I could feel how much he loved me, and I won't be able to feel that again on this earth. Oh how I miss those chuckles, long talks on the phone, and hugs. I miss them so much.

There are a lot of things that I felt in the short hours after my dad died, and those were just a few. Penny and I drove from Idaho to Denver where I met up with my sister, Bre. It was so nice being with my twin, one of my best friends, who was going through the same thing. Somehow, through all the pain, we were able to laugh and enjoy our time  together, driving up to Illinois to prepare the funeral and sort through other things. I was so grateful for my other family members who were there for us and who also loved my dad just as much as we did. The funeral was beautiful-- my sister Heather played "Let it Be" by the Beatles on her viola, which my dad would have loved. There were so many people from work that came, telling me and Bre how much they liked my dad and that all he talked about was us. I also loved seeing all my Hohmanns... we don't get to see them very often and I am so grateful that they are so loving and amazing. The funeral was wonderful, but also very hard at the same time. Saying goodbye was difficult. 

I took my dad for granted. Whenever I talked to him, he always asked if there was anything I needed help with, so willing to do anything for me. He always said he had six kids, not just two; he loved all of his six kids so much, as he would frequently tell me. He also loved my childhood friends and talked about them and how they were all "sweet ladies." I could talk to my dad about anything for hours, and I wish I wouldn't have taken that for granted. I should have told him how much I appreciated him. I wish I could have told him how much I loved and love him. There are so many things I wish I could say to him, but I can't right now.

I regret so many things, but I am also grateful for so many things. I am grateful for the example that my dad set for me. I am so thankful that he loved me so much and was such a great man. I am so happy that my dad was able to see me get married. I am glad I sent my dad so many pictures and videos of Penny. I am glad I even Skyped with him minutes after Penny was born. I am so thankful that Scott, Penny, and I were able to go visit him this past Christmas. I am so thankful that I married someone that my dad approved of, and my dad was grateful for that too. He always said he was glad that I married Scott because he knew Scott would take care of me. He even told Scott how much he liked him and how much he appreciated him. I am so glad that he was able to meet Penny. I know Penny won't remember meeting her grandpa, but we have pictures of Grandpa Randy holding Penny during Christmas. Oh how Grandpa loved Penny. 

I am thankful that as a member of the LDS church, I know that I will be able to see him again, but that doesn't numb the pain. It does make it more tolerable, but I still feel an emptiness in my heart for my dad. I don't think anything will fill that void, but I know that I will be able to be with my dad again. Nothing in the world would have prepared me for this, but at least I know that my family now has a guardian angel. He was always so worried about my safety, and I am sure he still is. I hope he can see how Penny is growing up, and I hope he is chilling with my future children, taking care of them for me until they come to earth. I love you so, so much, Dad. I wish I could say it to you and hear you say it back, but I know you love me too.

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