The Brother and I lost our father, and our mom lost her husband. Fuck cancer.

In the intervening years, I realize how much I’ve grown to be like my dad. In my mannerisms, my speech, my way of viewing the world – at least on a personal level. To say my dad and I would have disagreed on politics…

When I wrote about this five years ago, I was still feeling the dichotomy of the event feeling like it happened last week and a long time ago. I’ve lost that feeling of immediacy. Some of that I’m just chalking up to my life going on – and all the changes that have happened in those five years. I still wish The Wife would have had the chance to meet my dad. They would have gotten on well. Plus, I think Dad would have known that I would turn out okay. Which I’m not sure he knew at the time.

At the time of his death, I was still living at home in my mid-twenties and marrying a woman I should have really known was not good for me. In the last two decades, I realized how much I grew up when Dad passed. I can remember the feeling of my “safety net” being taken away – and that I now had to step up. It wasn’t an immediate change. I still fumbled for years. But I can’t deny that Dad’s passing was a major turning point in my life – and how I approached life.

I miss you Dad. But thank you for helping me become the man that I am. And wanted to be.