Daddy or Chips? Daddy. Every time.
He was the best Dad in the world. I know everybody says that about their Dad, but seriously, I can't put into words what he was like as a Father. I always say, "My Dad was my best friend" and I mean it. I told him absolutely everything, and followed him around like a lost puppy. He was my idol, and still is to this day. He always saw the best in everybody, and liked to befriend people who were quite quiet or shy, to try and give them a bit of confidence. He was outgoing, charismatic and absolutely hilarious. More than anything, he had the most positive attitude I've ever come across in a person. For those of you reading this who knew him, you will completely understand what I mean when I am trying to describe him. I honestly don't have a bad word to say about him. Whenever anybody in my family tells me I look like him, or that I remind them of him, I feel honoured, because if I am anything like my Dad I know I'm doing alright.
One thing that stands out in my memory about what kind of a person he was is when he was quite ill. We went to visit him in Clatterbridge Hospital, and sadly discovered that he had lost the use of his legs, and was paralysed from the ribs down due to his cancer becoming so aggressive. I can remember so vividly being sat next to my brother in complete shock. We were heartbroken for him. The first thing that popped into my mind was "What about football?", because he was such a football fanatic, not to mention it being his career. My heart broke even more when he began to cry. He apologised. He apologised that he wouldn't be able to go running with us anymore, or on bike rides, or drive us to school. He apologised for what had happened to his body, and despite his suffering, he was thinking about his children and what he wouldn't be able to do for them anymore. To this day, that memory breaks my heart into a thousand pieces. He was unbelievably selfless.
To think that I have lived the past ten years without him absolutely baffles me. A decade has passed where I have gone through high school, taken my GCSE's, taken my A Levels, passed my driving test, turned 18, gone to university, met the love of my life, turned 21, and so many other things I know he would have loved to have seen. It breaks my heart to think that my brother has been so successful, graduating from university, then graduating with a Masters, and most recently leaving home and moving to Oxford for a new job, and he couldn't share any of these moments with our Dad. David, please know that Dad would have been proud of you. Everything you have accomplished and how you live your life would have made him unspeakably proud. I feel selfish when I think I wish my Dad could be here in the future for when I get married and when I have children and other special events, mainly because there are millions of people on this Earth who have suffered far worse than I have, and in much worse circumstances. I know I have a wonderful life, and I really can't complain about not having what I want because I have a lot more than most people do. But as time goes on, and people move on with their lives, it has become apparent to me that I don't get used to the fact that my Dad isn't here, and I don't miss him less. Every day he isn't here, I miss him a little bit more. I often find myself watching this video on repeat, just to hear his voice.
For those of you reading this blog, please don't think I feel sorry for myself. I really don't. I feel sorry for my Dad, because he was so young when he passed away, and he had so much to live for. It upsets me when people complain about their parents, because you shouldn't take them for granted. One thing I never do is take anybody for granted, and through the loss of my Dad I have realised how important it is to stay close to people who mean a lot to you, and tell them you love them as often as possible.
My Dad is probably reading this and thinking, "Oh stop moaning man!" and he's right. I shouldn't complain, but given that it is his 10 year anniversary on Monday, and I have been thinking about him constantly, I thought it might do me good to write something down. My Auntie Moira says that anniversaries don't matter because we miss him every day regardless, and she's right. I just cannot believe that an entire decade has passed, when I still feel like I saw him yesterday. I hope that feeling never goes away.
I only knew my Dad for twelve years, but that was enough time to make an amazing impact on my life. I hope that I live my life in a way that my Dad would have been proud of. I also hope that one day, if I have children, they look at me the way I looked at my Dad. Complete and utter adoration. Most of all I hope I see him again one day. I don't know if there is a heaven, but I am convinced there is definitely some form of afterlife. If there wasn't, that would mean I would never see my Dad again, and to me that just isn't even an option. I don't hope I see him again, I KNOW I will see him again. Hopefully it'll be in about 60 years, but that's fine. Just knowing that I will see him again one day is what makes every day of my life just a little bit easier.
I miss you Daddy, and I hope you can read this, wherever you are. I will love you forever. See you at the far post. Rachel x