Wednesday, January 16, 2008

January 14, 1999

I missed an anniversary two days ago. Or maybe I didn't really miss it but tried to push it out of my mind. My father died on January 14 nine years ago. It is hard to believe it has been that long.

I was 23 years old and going to graduate school in Denver at the time. My father took the bus to work every morning in the wee small hours. He was almost legally deaf and didn't have the best vision in the world. He got off the bus at his stop and was crossing the street to go to work when a speeding courier van hit and killed him. The driver tried to leave the scene but fellow bus passengers stopped him. The authorities had some difficulty in tracking down my poor mother so I didn't hear from her until later in the day. She and I are both a little manic now about always having a cell phone or some other way to be contacted in case of an emergency.

We decided to focus the funeral on "living today." Don't neglect to kiss someone goodbye or tell them that you love them. Don't put off doing things tomorrow that you could do today. Because you can go through the same routine that you do every single day and not live through it. Every day counts.

I guess I try to put January 14 out of my mind each year because I don't want to remember my father that way. I always remember his birthday on August 17. That is how I prefer to remember him. I know if he were alive right now, he would probably be out shopping for his soon-to-be grandchild.

If you don't mind, I'd like to ask a favor of you today. Tell someone close to you that love them. That you appreciate them. That they mean a lot to you. Because you never know if you'll get another chance.


Purl said...

I'm having a hard time not tearing up as I read your tragic post. Chris thinks I'm crazy, but I am obsessive about always kissing him goodbye whenever one of us leaves the house, even if it's just for a quick errand.

Amy said...

Awww, Purl. I think it's sweet that you do that. If there is one thing I have learned in this life, it is that you cannot take anything for granted. Especially people.

Literary Feline said...

I'm late coming around for a visit, Amy, but I will definitely take you up on your assignment.

Ellen said...

Well, I love YOU!

amy said...

Sweet Amy...I'm so sorry about how you lost your father. Thank you for sharing the story and thank you for reminding us to tell those we love that we do.