Happy birthday Daddy, I miss you and love you.

ballpoint pen sketch of my dad

Apparently 15th November is ‘I love to write day’? No idea who, where, what or why that is, but the date is significant to me as it’s my Dad’s birthday – he would have turned 71 this year. So in honour of the day, I’m going to write briefly about him.

Above is my recent sketch from a favourite photo of him taken on my wedding day in 1994, he is embracing me as I leave to go away on honeymoon (I didn’t include myself in the sketch as it’s the back of my head and big wedding hairdos are hard to draw). I love this photograph but it’s a bitter reminder of how much I have missed his hugs for the past seventeen years.

The physicality of loss is the most difficult aspect to come to terms with after a death. He was a quiet man but I miss everything about his presence. Apart from his face, I remember and miss his hands too, broad stubby fingers, square nails – piano playing surgeon’s gentle hands.

I miss his smell, he worked in hospitals for most of my life and always came home with a faint scent of disinfectant overlaying his aftershave and warm daddy smell. We used to complain about that but I miss it now.

I miss the soft creak of his laugh, and the crinkle of the wrinkles around his eyes. He was quick witted and very funny at times, especially when he was together with his friends. We used to tease him a lot as he was able to laugh at himself. I’d love to tell him I’m sorry now for teasing him those times that bordered on being unkind.

I miss listening to him playing Chopin and others on the piano. Listening to classical music brings me closer to him, in particular piano music. So here’s a link to the beautifully emotive Rachmaninoff you can lose yourself in, the Piano Concerto No.2 in Cm Op.18 – II. Adagio sostenuto reduces me to tears. 🙁

I miss not being able to talk about our common interests which, apart from the piano also included singing, ballet, art, books and travel. One of my special memories is singing together in the chorus for a production of Handel’s Messiah. We have similar temperaments, noses, eyes and we both could raise one eyebrow. He never met any of my children and I know he’d love to share in all their small achievements. They have all inherited different things from him so I see him through them now.

My greatest sadness is I feel my time with him was too short. He was only 53 and I was 28 when he died but apart from that he wasn’t at home much when we were growing up because he worked very long hours. However I always felt very loved by him, I was convinced when I was small that I was his favourite. There is plenty I would love to talk about to him, ask him, things I’d have liked to have told him before he died.

Of course there’s not much I can do now about my regrets, except perhaps to learn from them and build positive changes into the future with my own husband and children – to take the time to be with them and tell them how special they are to me.

Happy birthday Daddy, I miss you and love you.

black and white photograph of my father looking at a slide

my father in the mid seventies

ballpoint pen sketch of my dad

Lucy At Home

After The Playground

27 thoughts on “Happy birthday Daddy, I miss you and love you.”

  1. What a beautifully written tribute to your dear father Liberty. I found it very moving, I lost my own Dad ten years ago. I didn’t realise that you were such a talented artist, the sketch is amazing!! Thank you so much for sharing this special post at #TweensTeensBeyond and wishing you a happy New Year. xxx

    1. Thank you Sharon, I’ve always loved to draw, it one of those little things that have filled me with awe as the skill is something I’ve been given and it delights me too! Sorry to hear about the loss of your Dad, ten years seems both long and yet so recent. I wish you a wonderful 2018. Xxx

  2. Jo - Mother of Teenagers

    I have nearly lost both my parents through illness and am thankful every day that they won their battle and are still here. No-one can replace the love and support our parents provide and I try to remember that each day as I raise my own children. Such a beautiful post and I am loving listening to this piece as I type. I hope you had a wonderful Christmas and look forward to seeing you again in the New Year. #TweensTeensBeyond

    1. Thank you for your lovely comments, I’m so glad you listened to the music as I really think it lends something to the atmosphere of the post. How scary that both your parents have been so I’ll and yet how wonderful they have been spared for a few more years. I wish you a lovely 2018. Xx

  3. So lovely, and heart felt. He would be proud of you.
    Hope you had a lovely Christmas and made some happy memories.

  4. Beautiful Liberty. Words that your father would proud of and the most amazing artwork too. I also lost my father at a young age and I understand how you feel on the special days. Thank you for sharing with #tweensteensbeyond I wish all the best for Christmas Liberty and a fabulous 2018

  5. Midlife Dramas in Pyjamas

    What a lovely piece of writing and a brilliant sketch. Your words painted a gorgeous picture of this lovely man. #TweensTeensBeyond

  6. This really struck a chord with me. I lost my lovely dad when I was 15 and like yours he was way too young. I find it really hard still now more than 20 years later that I never knew him as an adult, never got to have grown up conversations . Loss is really tricky , thank you for sharing this #blogcrush

    1. I’m really sorry to hear that, my youngest sister was also 15 when my dad died and I feel for her knowing that he’s been gone for longer than she knew him. I was the only daughter to have my father walk me down the aisle at my wedding. It’s those adult milestones which make it all come home. Thanks for your comments.

  7. What a beautiful tribute. My dad is also a very important figure in my life and is currently battling a severe, chronic illness – your words have really spoken to my heart and I really am still grateful to have time with him, even if we may not have that privilege for much longer. I am so sorry for your loss – it is clear that you care for him deeply #blogcrush

  8. So so beautifully written, I lost my Dad in August, so I can understand your words. Your Dad sounds like a wonderful man x

  9. Liberty, very touching! On November 7 it was 16 years ago since my father passed away also and I completely get what you are saying! One of my sons, who was 10 at the time was with me two days after my dad died when I went through my parent’s room in the house I grew up in seeing if there was something we needed to take care of immediately. I found my son in their restroom smelling his Vitalis scented hair brush and asked what he was doing. He told me, “I just wanted to smell PawPaw again.” Still brings tears to my eyes to even scribble this down! It’s a powerful thing to miss a parent, and an even more powerful thing to have had a parent that you loved and truly miss years and years later! We were both blessed….and maybe this is a selfish thing, but I wish we had both been blessed longer.

    1. Thanks Jeff for sharing your lovely memories, funnily enough I spotted my dad’s hair brush in the bin in my parents room shortly after he died, my mum was clearing out some of his things. To this day I’m sorry I didn’t rescue it! Funny the small details we remember. We were blessed I’m grateful for having had him for a father.

  10. Such a beautiful tribute to your daddy. I cannot imagine your pain of loss. I like to think pain from loss makes the heart grow fonder of what we had.

    Dear Lord, turn Liberty’s tears of loss to tears of joy as she remembers all the special times she and her daddy shared together. Help her to know the truth of your promise that she will once again be united with her loved ones in Your good timing. Comfort Liberty, Lord, on this day and all days when she misses her daddy and starts to feeling regrets. May she know Your peace. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

  11. So beautiful! You have a beautiful way of writing, focusing on the good and an awesome artistic talent.. I’m sure he would be proud. God bless x

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