My First Father’s Day Without My Dad / Robert Ingelhart

I walked into Hallmark the other day to buy a card for one of my friends, only to turn the corner and be bombarded by the cards for Father’s Day. While this might not seem like a big deal to some, for me, this will be my first Father’s Day without my dad.

Emotionally, I am not ready to face Sunday, June 18 or any of the Father’s Day after this one. I am dreading all the gift advertisements on the radio and television, the posts on Instagram, the collages on Facebook. The date on the calendar stares at me mockingly, which makes the me feel extremely isolated.

This year, I won’t be able to mail him a card.

This year, I won’t be able to call him and hear his voice on the phone.

This year, I won’t be able to send him a text to tell him how much he means to me.

This year, I won’t be able to go out to dinner to his favorite restaurant.

The injustice of the situation makes it even more difficult. I don’t know what I am going to do on this day. I don’t know if I will cry my eyes out in my bedroom or if I will write angry entries in my journals or zone out on Netflix and wait for the day to become night. I wish I had the answers, but I truly don’t. I wish with all my heart I could turn off my feelings and become numb for this one day.

If this is your situation this year, please know you aren’t alone. The pain you feel is devastating, the hole in your heart is palpable, the loneliness is crushing. With all of my heart, I want to tell you it will be OK, but I know you’ve heard that plenty of times, so all I have confidence to tell you is that you are seen and your voice is heard, even if you can’t speak the words out loud.

They say the pain will lessen, but it won’t ever go away. And that’s OK, because I never want to be comfortable with how it feels without him here.

“No one ever told me that grief felt so like fear.” C.S. Lewis Thought Catalog Logo Mark

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