My mom, my sisters, my nephew and my niece are all together today to sing his favorite songs and share our fond memories of him. Just last night we listened to a tape (yes, tape) recording of him teaching one of us (we don't recall who it was) how to sing Bahay Kubo and Happy Birthday. I also made my sisters cry with the photo slide show/video I made for today. It always feels good to have the family together but it's also bittersweet because we are not and will never be complete again.
Like anyone who has lost a loved one will tell you, it's a pain that doesn't go away. You never really stop grieving or missing that person, you just learn to manage it better as time goes by.
When I remember what happened three years ago, I can't help but think of how it was the worst day of my life. Being the eldest child I had to step up and take responsibility for a lot of things related to his death. I had to show strength in front of my younger siblings even if all I wanted to do was sit and be catatonic in one corner and wish it all away. We take for granted that our parents will always be around and will always be there. Losing one of them made me feel like the rug was pulled from under my feet. It just leaves you in a state of shock and disbelief that makes you wish that it was all just a bad dream.
I think our family will never stop missing him. Even after three years I still get moments when I want to be able to share with him the things I've experienced. I still wish I could talk to him and get his opinion on things.
Three years. He would have been 60 in September. We all wish he was still here but he is in a better place so we do our best to make peace with that every day.
Till we meet again Pa, we love you.