Dear Dad,

Did you love me like you did Jack, Tiff and RJ? I know. What a question. But, today, on what would have been your 62nd birthday I wonder. I always do when I have a minute to think about you. I always do when I go through the box of things that had belonged to you. Your sais the most precious. Like I do every time I go through that box, I wonder.

I’m sorry dad. I’m really sorry to ask. To wonder. But, to be honest, it’s hard not to when I look and all I see are the things my siblings didn’t want. And I couldn’t let it go. I think about the storage of things you left to Jackie. I think about how she gave it all away. I think about the life insurance you left to Tiff and Braddah. I cry like I always do. I didn’t want money. Just the feelings of being loved. The very emotion that I’ve craved my entire life from you and mom.

I don’t know why all of this is coming out. Truth be told, Dad, this year I’ve missed you a lot. I’ve decided to start another series, Dear Dad. I’ve met quite a few people in the blogosphere who write letters at Christmas to their loved ones about the year. I want to do that just from August to August. It works right? Something to just hold on to, to remember the year and share it with you. Wherever you are.

And this year has been a year. We grew our family with our little boy. He’d love you and you’d love him. He’s active and, boy, does he love his music. Anything he can make sounds with he’s into. He’s smart, Dad. So very smart. He watches everything and everyone and repeats actions with ease. He’s so curious and it scares me almost every day. How am I going to protect such a wild soul as he grows? And yet it excites me because the world is his to conquer and I can’t wait to see what that means.

This last year I’ve grown. And fallen in love over and over and over. I’ve shared forever and firsts and everything in between with my little family. From traveling internationally for the first time to finally eating at a well recommended local restaurant. There was softball again this summer where I was put in a different position that I’d like to think I thrived in. Fractured my elbow and ribs but got up like you taught me and played through. Floated the river three times. The first we had to SOS. The second and third there was no need for our butdidyoudie hashtag. It was that safe. It’s about time.

This last year we went from a small little one bedroom apartment we built three years of our lives in into a three bedroom home. A have my own reading room – the spare walk in closet really – but it houses my entire library with room for growth, soft comfiness on the ground for me to snuggle with a book in hand, and twinkling lights that remind me of the many times you caught me on the roof under the stars, flashlight in hand reading. It’s been a rough move and I think I’m sticking here for a while. I wanted to buy a home within the next 18 months but right now I don’t think I can mentally do another move.

And then dad, there was growth in my psyche. I’ve still got quite a few learning to do, but if I’ve learned anything this year, it’s that life is about growth. I don’t want to be stagnant in anything. Not in my personal growth, not in my relationships, not in my soul. So, I’ve looked for ways to grow. I’ve broaden my music – totally digging the band Aquilo – and I think you would too. I’ve changed my lifestyle where I’m eating healthier and exercising. I’ve continued to feed my always hungry learning need. I’m working on ways to cultivate my love and relationship with Jeremy. And, I watch the mothers I admire and respect so that one day I can be that mother to my son.

So many things happened this year dad. As each milestone, story, adventure took place I thought of you. Like I always do. You’d have such an adventure if you were here. I miss you always. Love you daddy. Happiest of happy birthdays.

Hun Girl