a year to the day November 9, 2009

Nashville2I've turned to this blog many times in the past four years (!!!) – for happy and not-so occasions. Today, I'm sitting down to write whatever comes to mind as I've just been puttering around the loft, flipping open cookbooks, shuffling things around. Not really able to focus on getting the things I need to accomplish done.

A year ago today, my dad passed away at the age of 78 from lung cancer.

Dates like today start building up in your head a few weeks before they creep up on you. The feeling of tension, mindlessness, not being able to pay close attention. I've been through it all before. Recently. Too recently, I often think.

As it was when my mom died three years ago now, the days leading up to the anniversary are way worse than the actual day. Yesterday, I woke up crying and had fits of it all day. Today, however, is just quiet. Pensive. Reflective.

How do I feel today? I miss my family. I'm my parents' only child and have started out on a premature journey to make my own way all by myself. It's lonely sometimes, I can't lie. It's hard sometimes, too. It's the natural order, however – you're supposed to outlive your parents. Grieve the loss of them. Build your own life and honor theirs.

That's what I'm doing. I feel more adult now than I did a year ago. More responsible, more patient. Certainly more focused on my career and this blog. I'm still ridiculously blessed with fabulous friends who today, like every other milestone day in a process that some of them are quite familiar with, reach out to me from wherever they are to support me. I've also lucked upon an incredible partner with whom I am building that life – and it's magic.

So today, while there is a certain grey haze on the day, there is also an overwhelming feeling of gratitude – to my parents for making me who I am and to my friends for letting me be that person. All of you – with me in body, spirit, or both – have my heart.

(photo taken at the Nashville Farmer's Market. why this photo? i dunno – it made me happy today)


Divina Nov 9, 2009 07:11 am

This is a very touching post. I can definitely relate. Thanks for writing this.

Paula - bell'alimento Nov 9, 2009 07:11 am

beautiful & inspiring

Dodie @AshevilleTravel Nov 9, 2009 07:11 am

*{hugs}* for u today. Your passion, creativity and sensitive spirit are most definitely a beautiful family legacy being lived to the fullest.

Jen Yu Nov 9, 2009 08:11 am

Sweetheart, it’s only natural to grieve and to remember. Yes, I completely agree that the days leading up to the anniversary are oddly harder than the day itself. Find peace and do what sets your heart at ease. Know that so many people love you – and that is a testament to the admirable job your parents did raising such a beautiful woman. xxoo

Lynn Nov 9, 2009 08:11 am

{{{HUG}}} What a remarkable daughter your parents had.

Patti Davis Nov 9, 2009 08:11 am

They are both smiling down at you, dear Tami. And proud – boy are they proud of you!

Dani Craig Nov 9, 2009 08:11 am

I admire your strength. Enjoy your quiet day.

katie Nov 9, 2009 10:11 am

such a sweet, sweet post. and such a fitting picture.

John Nov 9, 2009 10:11 am

Brings tears to my eyes. Hugs.

Scott Nov 9, 2009 11:11 am

I am sure that your parents are quite proud.

ziza Nov 9, 2009 02:11 pm

beautiful post. thank you.

kate Nov 9, 2009 07:11 pm

I am so sorry. That photo fits the post perfectly – you see what is missing, but you see the beauty left behind as well. Thanks for sharing.

Tartelette Nov 9, 2009 08:11 pm

Your parents can be proud of you. You are an amazing person, with an amazing heart and I am so glad we got the chance to get to know each other better.
Yes, the days before are tough and so are all the days in between but there are friends near and far to listen and let you cry or scream or be silent.

Sarah Pearse Nov 10, 2009 07:11 am

Echo, Echo, Echo to the other comments…wow, what a daughter they had…celebrate and mourn them in your way. Be proud of the person you have become. Thanks for your touching post, Sarah

Kalyn Nov 10, 2009 09:11 am

What a tough time you’ve had the last few years. I’m impressed with your strength and wished I could give you a big hug after I read that. Also sad that I didn’t get to talk to you more at BlogHerFood. That was just too much of a madhouse!

Glenn Nov 10, 2009 02:11 pm

I lost my father a year ago also. May I recommend a book – “Nothing to be Frightened Of” by Julian Barnes. It didn’t erase the pain but it helped me to cope with it. Take care. Thanks for the posts.

Jonell Galloway Nov 11, 2009 01:11 am

You are a good “child”. I have the same feelings about my father’s death. You and I have in common the ability to look at what they gave us and made us into and appreciate that, by doing so, they are still alive inside us — every day I do something or say something, and then instantly think that’s what my Dad would have said or done.
As long as there’s someone alive who remembers them from time to time, especially in this way, they are not really dead.
The ability to look at it in this way is a gift and lessens the pain.

lisa Nov 11, 2009 06:11 pm

A beautiful and touching post that all of us can relate to in some way. I feel the same way about my dads passing which was almost 15 years ago. I am always reminded of my dad in so many little ways every day, it’s bittersweet. I am sure your parents are very proud of you.

Grace Nov 15, 2009 01:11 pm

I lost my father when he was 63 to Lung Cancer 20 years ago. I was angry with him for a long time, but am at peace now. I lost my mother 4 years ago, on my 50th birthday. The grief is just now calming. I miss them both so much. I understand your feelings completely.

Carrie Neal Walden Nov 15, 2009 06:11 pm

Beautiful and moving post. My divorce was final on 4/21/05 and my grandmother passed on 4/21/06 – that is a “day” for me- I totally know what you are talking about regarding days leading up, day “of” . . . thinking of you!

Barbara Harris Nov 21, 2009 03:11 am

Tami I feel a bit silly commenting on this post after it has been up so long. I’m just really behind on blog reading. However I did want to send warm thoughts to you as you deal with the emotions surrounding this day. Hugs.

David Nov 26, 2009 07:11 am

So glad to hear you are doing well, I always knew you would be alright and find your way.