A year ago today, I was preparing for my last year in college and planning my dad’s surprise 60th birthday party. A year ago today my sister, mom, and dad were planning a vacation to go on a cruise. But today, we don’t have our dad anymore. Last October, my dad suffered from what we thought was a stroke, which ended up being a seizure. After tests upon tests, my dad was diagnosed with a low-grade, slow-growing brain tumor. He was put on seizure medication. The doctors said not to worry because the tumor is not anything that will affect him, go on the cruise in March and when you come back, we will take care of it. That was in January. By the end of February, my dad had lost complete mobility of his left arm and could not walk on his own due to limited mobility in his left leg. We found out the brain tumor was affecting his left side and it was not from a fall he had at one of his jobs. By March, he had brain surgery to try to remove the tumor, which we still thought was the same as before. After the surgery, the surgeon tells us she couldn’t remove it because she ran the risk of paralyzing him and that it was now the worst kind of brain tumor that there was. Anyways, fast forward some time and my dad was doing chemo and radiation for 33 sessions. We all thought this was going to pass, but we were wrong. His left arm was dead weight and he couldn’t walk without someone’s help. After the chemo and radiation, my dad went to rehab (the best in the state) and no progress was made he kept saying he wanted to come on. He came home on a Wednesday and went back to the hospital Sunday. That was the last time he came home.
I lost my dad, best friend, hero, motivation, and my entire life in a day. On July 20th, 2016, my world was turned completely upside down and I don’t know what to do. I keep trying to motivate myself and keep going for him, but it’s hard to do without him here. It’s like there is no motivation anymore. I wish so badly for my dad to just come back, for me to wake up and this all be a bad dream, but it’s not. At 22 years old, I lost the one person who always understood my side of everything, always made sure I was okay before he was or anyone else was. I was his youngest daughter, his baby, and now he can’t even hug me or kiss me. I won’t receive those phone cals anymore or texts saying he won the lottery. The worst part of it is that I won’t have him to dance with at my wedding, he won’t be here to see my children and for them to call him ‘Nonno,’ which is Italian for grandpa.