Losing your father is definitely heart wrecking when he has been the emotional support system all through the life. Besides unconditional love, Dad also provided stability, acceptance, and encouragement when it mattered most. It becomes more painful when one had been in direct daily conversation of a couple of hours with Dad for last 20 years. It is an Irish saying that losing a father is like losing your umbrella in rough weather. Never before realized the essence of this saying in my life.

It was difficult to accept that with the emotional support system now gone, how will it be possible to imagine one’s life with this sudden emptiness. His personality’s realism makes it impossible to pretend that his going is not a reality, and everything may proceed in a routine matter. The grieving process, however, unadvised becomes necessary and the first step towards acceptance. It is essential but difficult to be strong for other near and dear ones, especially when one has young kids. One can sincerely wish to be as strong as Dad, who always advocated living reality and strength despite having a troubled childhood. My siblings and I still remember his inspiring tumultuous journey from obscurity to a renowned academician. He reached there gradually but steadily plowing his way through. His useful tip that regularity in work overshadows any shortcomings always resonates in the family.

It is increasingly difficult to acknowledge his going when one frequently relied on his advice and guidance. The back of the mind always has his spirit, making one feel that he is still with me like a lighthouse guiding through unknown waters. The inner self always provides an input regarding what he would have said or advised in a given situation. Many would dispute that with every personality, there are both negative and positive memories. Negative thoughts are not worthwhile to be cherished as the person who could have defended himself is already gone.

Dad would be remembered whenever there will be any milestone event in my family. My youngest one did not get a chance to see his ‘dada’ at age with some understanding level. I wanted him to be with us when my youngest one started school, but destiny had other plans. It will be a tedious task to find ways to include my Dad somehow in the family’s future milestones. Younger and future generations should have occasions and reasons to remember their Grand Dad with pride.

Lastly, it is essential to state that I cherish his pleasant memories, although the pain of his loss will always be fresh like a festering wound. I am thankful to Almighty Allah for giving me a dad like him and how he touched my life in such a powerful and soothing way. It is generally said that when your father is no more, you try to find many things in yourself which were in him as it is the only way to keep him with you. I feel I will be blessed if I can have in me any of his attributes. Dad, you will be dearly missed please keep visiting our lives if possible.

Nadeem Khan is an author and speaker based in Toronto.


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