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Fourteen years. Has it really been fourteen years? Where does the time go? Another year, another anniversary, and more tears.

There are days when I wish that I didn’t remember these dates, that I went on blissfully unaware of when mum and dad passed, not having to feel the pain of their absence. But, when I catch myself in those moments I get angry with myself, angry for being so selfish, for wanting to not feel the pain, for wanting to just carry on as though nothing was wrong.

I guess to some degree that old saying about time being a great healer is true. I don’t think I will ever be able to go get through their anniversaries without shedding a tear but it has to be said that it is easier to get through these days compared to how it used to be. Now, I’m not saying it’s a fun day. No, that it most certainly isn’t. It doesn’t take much to set me off: a song, a memory, hell even seeing a place they used to like going to on the TV is enough to set me off some times.

Dad’s missed so much of my life. He missed ever seeing my two beautiful girls and in a lot of ways I blame myself for that, for not settling down sooner and giving him the pleasure of spoiling his grandchildren rotten. I was too busy having fun, too busy getting drunk and going to gigs. Too busy to realise that both he and mum weren’t going to be around for ever so what did it matter if I delayed things a little bit?

He’s missed everything I’ve done over the last few years, how I’ve managed to get through pretty much everything that’s been thrown at me by this life of mine. He’s missed the changes in me – both mentally and physically – and how I strive to challenge myself, to try and make me a better person. How I try to lead by example especially for my girls.

He’s missing out on this next chapter of my life, the life I’ve started with Shelli and all the wondrous places that’s going to take me.

All that aside, the thing I miss most is just sitting down, having a pint and good chat with him.

I miss you dad…always will. I’ll raise a glass or two for you tonight!