Nearly two years later

Hello everybody,

 

I haven’t posted anything here in a very long time. I thought about it now and then, even started to write a new post, but somehow it’s incredibly difficult.

However, I wanted to talk about the things that are different after two years, things I think about a lot or that I just realised recently.

 

After two years without him I don’t cry myself to sleep that often anymore. Maybe once a month.

My mum still finds stuff that belonged to him in cupboards or in the basement: Painting utensils, old computer stuff, clothing,…

I own two pullovers he used to wear and when I am particularly down I inhale their scent. After two years they’re starting to lose this wonderful smell…

We’ve got a new tombstone since December (the stonecutter took one year to finish it!) and it looks really nice, much more personal than the wooden cross everyone else has and he had before.

My mum told us she got an account at an online dating site, much to the dislike of my brothers and me. I understand her, she’s the one who has to sleep alone in this enormous bed. But it’s weird for us kids to imagine another man making her compliments and making her laugh, maybe moving in with her some day. It’s nothing I’ve ever looked forward to. I know my dad wanted her to move on and be happy again. In the end that’s what should matter: That my mum’s happy.

Last week I got to accept my “daddy issues”. Well, not accept, but I came face to face with them. I met a guy at a party and I really liked him and I can’t stop thinking about him. But I’ve realised a day after the party that he just reminds me a lot of my dad: He’s tall, he’s kind, he’s calm, he’s got short curly hair, he plays the same instrument,… And I also realised that he’s not the first one. The guy I had a crush on before had reminded me of my dad too! It’s all so very confusing and I don’t know how to handle these new feelings, whether this is bad or okay. I hate that I can’t talk to anybody openly about this. Daddy issues is not only a weird and awkward topic, it’s also kind of a taboo to talk about them.

I miss cuddling with my dad, waiting at the train station for him (we used to take the same train to school/work), getting his advice, hearing him laugh…

The closer his death day comes the more depressed I become.

 

-Mareike

Happy birthday

Dear dad,

 

I wish you a happy 54th birthday!

Today I thought a lot about you. More than usually.

I tried to find a memory I cherish most, a funny anecdote. But I couldn’t find one. There was no story that I remember very well.

However, I do remember many things:

I remember the way you styled my hair (just put in lots of hair clips and make small tails) – our “bandit hairdo”.

I remember driving bike with you, sometimes really long tours. I remember buying gladioli with you for mom after bike tours. I remember when we once had an encounter with a goose family on a bike tour and how the gander tried to attack us.

I remember playing badminton with you in the courtyard. I remember you mowing the lawn (I loved the smell of it).

I remember you eating peanuts – and when I discovered that we eat them the same way: First eating the halved ones, then the complete ones.

I remember our staring contests. Sometimes I won but most of the times you made me laugh and I was glad for losing.

I remember shaving with you. You shaved your real beard, I my imaginary one. I loved when you applied the shaving foam on my face and choosing and aftershave afterwards was always so much fun!

I remember the night you gave me “Papa Bär”. I remember when I wanted to give him back to you a couple years ago – and how you told me, that he’s mine and you want me to keep him.

I remember when you had to stay at home and during my lunch breaks, when I went home, how we drank coffee together and talked and I loved it. I loved every single story you told me.

I remember your hugs. I remember the smell of you. And everytime I see the colour yellow I immediately think of you. Also when I see roses.

I wish I could have given you a better present than one lousy daffodil I stole from a front garden…

I feel like thinking of you and remembering you is one of the greatest gifts I can give to you. And at the same time I feel like I’m letting you down, because I don’t remember every single story you ever  told me and I don’t have a funny anecdote I could tell.

My gift to you is this promise: I promise to you, that I will never ever forget you, I will always love and cherish you and every thing and every memory you gave to me. I will care for mom and my brothers and your parents.

I hope that one day we’ll see each other again and we’ll be able to celebrate your birthday together. As a whole family.

 

Love,

your favourite daughter Mareike

Dad’s Cancer – His final weeks

Hello everyone,

 

It’s been a terrible long time since my last post and I’m very sorry.

The thought of writing this post was quite painful.  Because it means that my dad really is dead.

 

The hospice he lived in for about 2 months was very good.  The carers were friendly, the food was good, his room was big with some pretty furniture.

It took us about 15 minutes to get to him by car and about 25 minutes by train.

It was very weird.  Just visiting my dad, not actually living with him anymore.

He came home four times and each time it was more exhausting for him.

He could hardly walk, climbing stairs was nearly impossible. He spoke less, got tired really fast and also became impatient.

At his last weeks he got a wheel chair.

A few days before he died was his 53rd birthday, so his siblings, their husbands/wives, his parents and of course his wife and kids celebrated with him.

My mum had made him a cake (he had been able to express which one he’d like to have) and had to feed him.

It was weird.

I had driven him from his room into the common room, where the celebration had taken place.

Somehow his guests had overerstimated his condition, they had looked shocked and sad.

During this hour my dad had looked quite often to me.  He couldn’t speak properly anymore, mostly nodded or shook his head to answer.  I will never forget his look.  The way he stared at me with his blue eyes I had always loved.  Like he wanted me to help him, but also full of unconditional love and trust.

In his last few weeks we started to hope he would die soon.  Because it was horrible to watch as his condition got worse and worse.

And I felt even more horrible for hoping that.

 

-Mareike

🙂

Dad’s cancer – Before the hospice

In January my dad had a faint and was unconscious for nearly the whole day.

He had a pulse, but he could not be woken up.

My mum called the paramedic and they injected him something and after some time he started reacting.  He was not completely ok, but he understood everything and could blink with his eyes to show that.

Funnily enough during his unconsciousness none of us (my brothers, my mum and me) cried or was in any other way shocked or scared.

After that incident however, it was clear that he couldn’t stay at home alone.  My mum had to work all day, so she couldn’t look after him.  That’s why we first tried it with a center for elderly people, where they only stayed over the day.

My dad was the youngest there with only 53 years and he was bored.  So he started wandering off, smoked a lot and after a few weeks he was dismissed, because of his behaviour.

Then my aunt, his youngest sister, agreed to be his “babysitter”.  She soon had to discover that it wasn’t that easy and that she was wrong in thinking he maybe could be healed.

I loved my dad and I still do, but seeing him struggle with the most trivial things was like torture to me.

But seeing him so sad at dinner, looking at us, knowing the couldn’t stay home much longer, because he needed better treatment, was heartbreaking.

I’d like to thank all my new followers and I’m sorry for this rather depressing post.  I just don’t want to euphemise this terrible disease and I want people to now how horrible it can be in reality (Some people like to romanticise cancer and it sickens me).

Feel free to leave a comment or to ask questions.  I hope you have a nice day!

-Mareike

🙂

My Cherished Object – Cherished Blogfest

Hello there,

Today’s post is a bit different from my other posts.  This post is about the Cherished Blogfest, hosted by Damyanti, Dan Antion, Paul Ruddock, Peter Nena and Sharukh Bamboat.  Important is to keep your posts to a maximum of 500 words.

 

Finding the most cherished object in my possession was rather easy, because it’s something that belonged to my father.

Let me introduce to you: Papa Bär!

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“Papa” is german for “dad” and “Bär” means “bear”.

I remember how I got him like it happened some weeks ago:

When I was a small girl I always needed a cloth in my arms to fall asleep.  Loosing this cloth was rather easy and I drooled a lot on it (eww).

At this particular night, there was a terrible thunderstorm and I was scared to death.  I was never scared of tunderstorms, but my cloth was in the laundry.  So I went to  my dad and he gave me Papa Bär.

I love the story, how my dad got him:

When he was about 22 years old, he went into this shop and there sat this teddy on one of  the shelfs and stared at him with his wonderful eyes.  My dad felt like he said to him “Buy me! Please…”.  It was like love at first sight.

As a young teddy bear Papa Bär was very fluffy and didn’t look this damaged.  My dad used to say he looks like “someone loves him a lot“.  And that’s the truth.  Since I’m a small girl I need this teddy to fall asleep.  Okay, I don’t necessarily need him, but having him in my arms is comforting and I love his smell (he smells a bit like my dad).

Papa Bär is not only a gift from my dad, he’s not only helping me to fall asleep, but also brings back childhood memories.  When I was young I pretended I’d marry him or that he’s my child and I christened him. He kept the other cuddly toys in check, because they had respect for him and wouldn’t dare making him angry (he’s a bear after all).

I could never give him away, let alone throw him away!

And I will never forget how my dad smiled, when he saw this teddy in my arms.  I brought Papa Bär to him before he had to go into the hospice, so they could say goodbye to each other.  It was his teddy after all and I’m deeply grateful he bought him and later gave him to me.

I feel closest to my dad with this teddy in my arms.

My 22 years old dad would have never thought he would buy such an important cuddly toy when he entered this shop.

 

 

I hope you enjoyed this story, even though it was a bit different than my usual posts 🙂

You can find the other participants of the Cherished Blogfest here.

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I hope you have a wonderful weekend! Please feel free to leave a comment!

-Mareike

🙂

Dad’s cancer – Ask questions!

Hello there,

This is another part of my series about my dad’s cancer. You can find the first part here.

 

Knowing that you or someone you love will die because of cancer is horrible.  You’re aware that your time together is limited.

One of the most important things during this time is to ask questions!

I wanted to know as much about my dad as I could, I wanted him to tell me stories about his life and why he did certain things.

Is there a thing you always wanted to know about your loved one?  Then don’t be shy!

I’d love to have known if my dad had ever intended to get a tattoo.  I never asked him.  On the other hand, if he ever would have intended to get one, he would have had one.

I was also at first angry with myself for not asking him, how he thought about me getting a tattoo.  But I know that he wouldn’t object to anything I do (if it’s not illegal or immoral), as long as I’m happy.  He always supported me, no matter what I did and I  miss this a lot.

Keep in mind, that if you don’t ask questions now, you’ll never get the chance to ask them again!

As long as they’re not weird or intimate I’m sure your loved doesn’t mind answering them – on the contrary!  If you’re showing interest it will make them very happy.

 

I hope I could help you with this.

Please feel free to leave a comment.

-Mareike

🙂

My Graduation Prank

Hello there,

 

So, there was no “Dad’s cancer” on Wednesday, because we had our graduation prank.

It was one of the things we looked forward to as kids, but when the time came near, we all started to doubt it would be as awesome as we had hoped.

 

Our plan:

The motto of our graduation was: “Genius and Insanity”.  So we wanted our prank to have this as a motto too.

At the beginning there were a lot of ideas, for example to have a bouncy castle in the school, but most of these ideas were discarded soon.

The big, new idea was to decorate the school as an asylum.  The graduators should dress either as patients or as doctors.

 

How it actually went:

We met at Tuesday evening to start with decorating.  Before that some friends of mine and me met to… get into the right mood. (I actually have pictures of us, but they’re all far too embarrassing 😉 )

Somehow I must have stepped into a shard, because by the time we were at school and I checked why my foot hurt, my whole foot was bloody.

After my foot was treated, I could start decorating too.

And by decorating I mean throwing toilet paper through the school.  This was actually most of the prank.  Very original.

There were also some signs with funny slogans or puns on them, but I wasn’t very impressed with the decoration.

I dressed as a mixture of Harley Quinn and Joker (I thought the make-up of the Joker was cooler, so I put that on) and was quite content with it.  Especially  because the rest of the graduators just wore some torn shirts or white coats (I’m still sorry I didn’t took any pictures of mycostume, it looked awesome).

Later we made all the other students play games against their teachers, which was rather boring.

 

The end:

It ended with a barbeque with some of the teachers, but most went home soon.

We had the time of our lifes, drinking, eating and talking and enjoying this last day at school.  I was a bit sad, to be honest.

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(Me and two of my friends at the BBQ.  To protect their privacy I photoshopped their faces. But you can still see all of our smiling faces.  Well, and my weird one^^)

 

This was our graduation prank, which was more of a fail and disappointment in my opinion.

 

Have you got any experiences with graduation pranks?

Feel free to leave a comment!

-Mareike

🙂