A letter to my late dad
"It's been more than 13 years since I last saw you, spoke to you or touched your hand. I miss you."
It’s been slightly more than 13 years since I last saw you, spoke to you, touched your hand, hugged you or just sat in your presence. I miss you! I really, really miss you. I miss the sound of your voice, how you’d call me Emmy (you’re still the only person who called me by that nickname). I miss your hugs. I really wish I could hug you right now. I miss your words of wisdom, your sense of humour (I think you’d like my sense of humour, though I tend to be a tad cynical) and I miss the sound of your laughter.

Not a day goes by when I don’t imagine what life would be like had you not died. Every situation that I find myself in (be it a family function, my matric ball, my graduation from university) I imagine a scenario where you’re present and sharing in the happy moments.

It’s Father’s Day this coming Sunday. I have to admit (and this may sound silly and petty), but I am a little envious of all the people who get to spoil their dads on Sunday. In my head, I already have your gift, have the day planned and mommy and I are in cahoots to keep it a surprise for you, but then reality is stone cold. You’re not here anymore and I don’t get to do anything exciting for you. Not just on Father’s Day, but on your birthday and every other day of the year.

I do get to make duah for you, though. That’s something. It’s the only thing I can do, really. I also get to hold on to the memories. I get to look at photos of you. I get to be proud when people (to this very day) still talk about what a fantastic man you were. You were always there for people when they needed help and you never expected or wanted payment for helping people. Your generosity and selflessness is inspiring and unmatched.

You’ve left people with a lot of good memories of you. They always mention how you made them laugh, always listened, how you always helped whoever you could with whatever you could. It gives me a feeling of warmth inside to hear these things about you and inspires me to be the kind of daughter you’d be proud of.

I like to believe you’re watching over mommy and me. When I dream about you, I feel happy and sad at the same time. Happy that you were in my dream and sad that it ended too soon.

I used to cry a lot in the beginning because of the void left by your death, but as I got older it got a bit easier. I still cry sometimes, but it’s easier to now laugh and smile at the memories.

Thank you, daddy. Thank you for your love. Thank you for the memories. Thank you for being a good, hard working human being who encouraged me to be the best person I can be and to do the best I can in everything I wish to achieve. Mommy always says you’re the one who motivated me when I was in primary school so she didn’t have to when I got to high school. So thank you for that.

Mostly, thank you for being my father. I love you.

Lots of big hugs,

Disclaimer: The views of columnists published on Parent24 are their own and therefore do not necessarily represent the views of Parent24.

*Article originally posted on From my fingertips. Used with permission.

If you could say anything to your late parents, what would it be?

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