My Dad: What I Miss Most

Yesterday (May 31) was the 10 year mark since my dad died from cancer. What is a tad ironic is the fact that I didn't really grieve his death until about a year ago. My mom and sister struggled right off the bat (as most people would who just lost a parent/husband) but I think I felt it was my job to be strong for both of them..including myself.

     I have tried, and continually to this day try, to control my thoughts when I'm beginning to get anxious, frustrated and simply sad.. but have realized it has hit me harder in the past few years than it did when it actually occurred. I think it is mostly due to the fact that I really could use him now more than ever. I could use his advice..his nurturing spirit..his unconditional love..his silly dances..his cooking..his talents.....him. It makes me sad knowing my children (one day) will never know their granddaddy and how incredibly awesome he was. He will never be able to come around for hugs and laughter or see me as a mom and the character qualities he instilled in me.

     I decided to make a list of 10 things I never want to forget about him as a reminder of how truly awesome he was. I want to share his stories and his legacy with those who are dear to me.

1. He could play the drums better than anyone I knew. I typically danced as he was playing and we rocked out. This was a nightly occurrence.

2. His vegetable stew was the best I have ever had and have had to this day. Always cooked from his heart and that was my favorite dish of all time. I think it was the freshly cut veggies and huge potato pieces.

3. He loved growing tomatoes and I loved to eat them. He showed me how to keep them alive and healthy and the ways of growing food. Outdoors and my dad went hand in hand. I am no girly girl and love to get my hands dirty..I can thank him for that.

4. He was a hard-worker. And I'm talking the kind of hard-worker that builds a home from the ground up using their own hands. Also, the kind of man that could be an entrepreneur and a successful one at that.

5. He was mostly bald. I laugh when I think about this because it was so him and I loved it. Not to exciting but a feature of Tim Beck that won't ever leave my mind.

6. He had little patience. This was both positive and negative for me. He wouldn't tolerate the scraping of teeth on your fork or constant giggling in inappropriate places (Laura and I typically found words like "breast" hilarious while singing hymns at Home Moravian church). He would give us a stern look. We knew to stop right then and there.

7. He was frugal. I learned the value of money in the way he utilized his income. We didn't take outrageous trips as a family when  Laura and I were young but rather used our imaginations creating games and contests at home. We loved being home as a family. I might be the only child who has never been to Disney World but I might be the only child who has had a dad that played gymnastics until dinner time and hiked adventurous trails left and right without hesitation. I am more than thankful.

8. He was one funny man. I think this is sadly where I get all of my goofy nature from.. which I am perfectly fine with. He would do this dumb penguin walk/dance that will forever be in my head...it was hilarious but something you'd have to see in person to understand. He was a child at heart.

9. He was a protector. He looked out for our family and our well being constantly. My safety was his priority and he never let anything bad happen. I remember when Laura hit me with a Nintendo controller (when we were like 8) and he came over to me.. picked me up ..and would hold me until the tears ran dry. Another time my mom tried to "re-pierce" my ear after a nasty infection... long story short I thought she was killing me and I remained closely under my dad's wing the rest of the evening. If he ever heard a strange noise or was unsure of our surroundings ..he kept his family near and got to the root of every problem. He made everything better..always.

10. He was immensely creative. We would build toy model airplanes and wrap Christmas presents together every year. He had a unique way of doing everything which I admired. For my 5th birthday he told me to close my eyes and when I opened them he was holding a beautiful white wooden doll bed that he had handmade. It even had a heart carved perfectly out of it and he found lavender floral fabric and foam stuffing as a "mattress." I will never forget that moment..... ever.

     I know he is watching down on me and hopefully is proud of his baby girl. I wish he could have seen me graduate college and met those who have been and are dear to me in life right now. I wish I could tell him how high school was for me and how strong my mom has become. I wish he could see all she does and the remarkable mother she was and is for Laura and I. I wish he could see my beautiful sister and how she has transformed into the most amazing mommy to his sweet granddaughter. I wish he could see Ellerie and that she has her granddaddy's eyes. I wish I could jump in the ocean with him just one more time this summer or tell him how my day has been. So many wishes...

     Yet as I sit ..and wish for just one more day with him, I remember he has seen me and all that my life has had going on. He has watched by my Heavenly Father's side his girls achieve so much and his family doing so well. And what keeps me going is knowing I will too see him again one day. Until then I smile up at the sky and thank God for letting me have him as my daddy for the time I did. Couldn't have asked for a more special person in my life.

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