Today it’s five years since my dad died. On occasion I’m reminded by my mum at how sad my dad was he’d never get to meet his grandchildren, and it makes me sad. H knows her ‘Grandad Mike’ from photos and can name him pretty easily, but the topic of death is something which I find hard. She knows people from photos, but she wont understand mummy is unhappy today because she misses her dad – she’ll just understand ‘mummy is sad’.
The best thing I can do is filling in the parts of his life into hers that I remember, that I have photographs for. I have videos I’ve recorded from 6-7 years ago of us all sitting around chatting which I’ve never been able to face going back to. One day… one day my dad will be the person he always is to me, to her. I hope.
My dad had his own business he bought after he retired. It was bought and has since been sold on, and I found out recently that a kind of tombstone-memorial type thing was manufactured with my dads information on it (which is identical to the place we scattered his ashes). The new owner sent me one recently, and I’m keeping it for H in a safe place so she’ll know people knew, loved and respected the grandad she’ll never meet.
I’ve heard about books which explain death to young people, but they deal more with the event of death rather than an anniversary. I know she’s too young to understand, and it’s too early to go there.
Maybe it’s the tiredness of last night too which is making me like this… two and a half hours of her defiantly playing up, refusing to sleep, until she finally gave in after sitting on the time out mat… until she came in with us at 6am (I think she may have been cold though, so I can understand that).
When I’m not with my little girl I miss her, when she wont settle and sleep I wish she’d leave me alone. It’s a strange feeling. When someone’s gone forever, you can’t wish them anywhere; they’re just gone.
Tonight H will have lots of cuddles, and we’ll talk about grandad and everyone, and maybe look through some photos, and everything will be fine. Then tomorrow it’s back to normal again, life continues, time to go back to work.