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Jewish Journal

Visiting My Father

by Ilana Angel

August 15, 2012 | 10:15 am

My Dad's favorite place to think.

Today I went to visit my Dad.  It was very emotional and painful.  I miss him every single day and my heart is broken that he is gone.  I see him in my son, and in myself, but the ache of his passing has gotten deeper with time.  With each accomplishment of my child, each tear of my mother, each moment of fear, sorrow, happiness, joy, loneliness, pride, anger and peace that I have, I wish I could call my Dad and share it.

My Dad was a wonderful human being.  He was funny, smart, charming, entertaining, and kind.  He made mistakes in his life, like we all do, but in the end he was inherently good.  He was my Dad, friend, cheerleader, and therapist.  He was a great listener and always knew what to say to make things better.  He was the perfect Grandfather and he is missed very much.  Everyone loved my Dad, Mr. Robert Angel.

I sat with him today for the first time in a long time.  I told him about my life now, ten years after his passing.  He was always very proud of me and I was happy to talk with him.  I spoke of my son, my work, my Englishman, my fears, hopes, dreams, and stress.  We spoke of my joy, my accomplishments, and my failures.  My life is blessed and I owe it all to my Dad.  He is the reason I am able to live the life I do.

Twenty three years ago I was the victim of a violent crime.  I spent a lot of time in and out of the hospital, and in and out of court, and my father stood by me every single day.  He was with me to hell and back and never let me go, even though there were times I begged him too.  He held my hand and led me to joy when I was certain I would not find happiness again.  He was my knight in shining armor and he slayed my dragons.

As I sat with my Dad I was overcome with love and anger.  Love for a man I adored, and anger that he is gone.  I never got to see my Dad grow old. He was a young 63 when he passed and that is not fair. He had four grandchildren when he died, and has eight now.  They all speak of Grandpa Bob often, even the ones that never got to meet him.  He is the head of our family and he always be. Always and forever.

My heart is broken today.  Being with my father has been lovely but the timing is sad.  I spent time with him on the same day I am leaving my mother and sister and I fear it might be too much for me to handle.  For now I will say goodbye to my Dad, wipe my tears, and try to recover before I tackle saying goodbye to my two favorite ladies.  I am praying I make it through today.  Praying and keeping the faith.


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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

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Ilana Angel writes two blogs for JewishJournal.com. KEEPING THE FAITH is about her worldview as a single Jewish mother, and KEEPING IT REAL is all about reality television....

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