I’ve had two hockey games since I returned home from Ontario and both times while driving to my hockey game, I started crying. Being that I live so far away from my family, my Dad’s death still seems a little bit unreal to me. I mean, I was there when he went in for surgery, I was there when he didn’t wake up. I was there when he died and I was there for the funeral. But now that I’m back in Vancouver, my day-to-day life isn’t punctuated with his absence the way it would be if I still lived close by, because I didn’t see my Dad every day. But every once it in a while, it hits me. Especially, it seems, when I’m driving to hockey.
This makes sense, though, because not only did my Dad share my love of hockey, but due to my crazy busy schedule, I usually make phone calls while I’m driving1, so I can feel like driving is less of a waste of time. And often when I drive to hockey, I call my parents house to chat with them. When I talked to my Dad, I would always tell him that I was driving to hockey and we’d talk about how my team was doing, or what he thought was wrong with the decisions the Leafs’ coaches were making, or what happened on the most recent episode of Cash Cab , or what whatshisname at the pigeon club said the other day, or just whatever. And so when I’ve driven to my last two hockey games, it makes me think of my Dad and I know that I can’t call him and have those conversations ever again. I really feel the loss. It makes it more real.
I am really sad that my Dad never got to see me play in person – I didn’t start playing hockey until I moved to Vancouver and he never came out here – but I’m so thankful that he was able to see me play live on the Internet during the Longest Game for CF. He watched every minute of the game that he could and he told me that I skated just like him and my Uncle Harry. It makes me smile to think about how much he liked watching that game and how proud he was of me.
I’m sure that over time I’ll be able to drive to hockey without crying, but I think that I’ll never play a hockey game without thinking about my Dad.
- Using my bluetooth headset, of course. All good and legal. [↩]