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Some days I move forward. I think about you. But I’m able to smile and not get sucked in. I remember, but I don’t cry.

I see your face on my phone. It’s there always. All the time. And I smile.

“Hi, Daddy.” That’s what I say. I smile, say that, and I’m okay.

And then the other days. They suck.

I cry. Hard.

I remember the fear. The feeling I felt when I heard the words.

I replay the moments in between knowing something was wrong and knowing you were gone.

I hear my brother’s voice.

My heart hurts so very much.

I wish I had a way to rewind it all.

And bring you back.

It hurts so f*cking much.

You’re supposed to still be here.

I’m supposed to be singing with you until you’re in your 90’s. AT LEAST.

And you’re not here. You’re not coming back. You are missing. You took a piece of my heart with you.

A chunk. A large one. And that empty space? It aches like HELL.

When the good days come and I’m smiling? I feel like it’s a small betrayal, to you, myself, our family. It’s just not fair. I try to remember you with a smile through the tears. I try to think of the moments that make me laugh. And I do. I can do it. But in the end, you’re still not here. Not coming back.

And it sucks. My heart hurts. Because it sucks.

I love you, Daddy. I miss you. I carry you in my heart always. That part is full. Despite the chunk I lost when I lost you. You fill up the rest of my heart with memories and laughter and moments where you simply held my hand. That’s all I need, for you to hold my hand as I make my way through this.

Do you think that’s possible? Reach down and hold me. I know you’re watching. You should be able to do it. Right? How does it work, anyway? Ah. I’m surely asking too much. But sometimes I have to.

Because I love you, Pops. And I miss you. Always.