It wouldn't be right for me to post each day this week to show how excited we are for Jackson's birthday to arrive without also sharing that there is something tugging at my heart as well.
I've sat down to write this post many times this week and end up walking away. There aren't words to express how much I am missing my Dad this week.
If my Dad was here, he would have been the first to calm me down when the computer crashed. He would have reassured me I would get the video redone on time. He probably would have been down to help (even though he wouldn't have known how to help...just being here would have made him feel better).
My Dad would have called me by now to discuss the menu for the party. I would have told him what I was planning and he would have added a million items I wouldn't see necessary. And in the end, his items would have been a hit. At the end of our conversation, Dad would have reminded me to bring some "small Cokes" for him. And...I would have.
My Dad probably would have thought of something to "make" ( AKA - have Uncle Tom make - tee hee) for Jackson's birthday. I always loved how he thought these "homemade" gifts meant more. He was right. But, he and Mom would have also already been to Toys R Us to pick out the perfect gift for Jackson. Mom still got the perfect gift, but I know she missed him during her shopping trip.
My Dad would love the stories of my sister, Michelle, and I giving each other a hard time over how many people I have invited to her house for the party (she says she is going to have to finish the basement in order to fit everyone in her house - ha). However, he wouldn't have had it any other way. In my Dad's eyes, celebrating a grandchild's birthday was a reason to gather all friends and family!
Needless to say, I miss my Dad. His absence is noticed each day I move forward. However, this week is especially hard.
Can you believe Jackson is one?
It is hard to believe that a year ago I called you to tell you I was in labor. Your response of shock with "Your kidding" was hilarious. We were all expecting Jackson to arrive any day, yet your shocked response displayed your excitement. I will never forget it. I love the story Mom shares about how you insisted she use the restroom at the hospital instead of before you left. You couldn't wait to get to me. I will share that story with Jackson some day.
I felt better when you and Mom arrived at the hospital. You came into the room every 30 minutes and watched the heart monitor as closely as you used to watch Larry Bird play basketball. You even alerted the nurse that Jackson's heart rate was dropping before she had noticed (after all - you had three daughters and had been through this before). In an instant I had nurses and doctors in my room helping with the issue. Even before Jackson arrived, you were watching over him.
I know that is exactly what you are doing now. As I tuck Jackson into bed each night, I look at your picture that hangs above his crib and I ask you to watch over him. I know I don't have to ask, but it makes me feel close to you.
I have missed seeing you with Jackson. If you were here, I'm sure you would be teaching Jackson to stick his tongue out at me or something rotten that I would insist you not do (but secretly loved that were doing). I wish I could see you bounce him on your knee, stick your teeth out at him (Maddie has shown him how you used to do it) or just simply love him.
As we celebrate Jackson's first birthday, you certainly are missed.
You made special occasions even more special.
I miss you,