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Message to Readers


I Lost My Papa Today. I Loved Him So Much

May 26, 2020


I lose my papa today due to heart failure. I want to share bits of our time together. Some that I've heard from others, and some that I remember. My heart reaches out to anyone during this time. 

Age: One

My papa cuddles me to his chest, both of us content to just be there. My grandma sits on the other side of the room, a forced smile on her face. My parents, aunts and uncles are all sitting outside, playing with my cousins. It was a normal day at the family house. My family and I didn't live in the state. We had to travel through many states to get to them. My papa and I enjoy our evening nap together, pleased to just be together.

Age: Four

I run across the yard towards the fish pond, my little feet moving faster as I near my papa. He smiles, throwing another handful of fish food into the green water, relaxed in his big red chair. "Hey Princess," he says, putting me in his lap, petting my hair. 

"Hi Big Red," I giggle, taking fish food from him and throwing it at the pond, but not getting it inside. He chuckles and hugs me tight in his big arms, and a hug him back with my tiny ones. My dad sits in a chair across from us and he and my papa start talking, both laughing with each other.

Age: Seven

I'm hanging out in the house with my cousin, decorating the cake we'd just made. "Ooh! The chocolate frosting!" she says animatedly. 

I wrinkle my nose, but smile with her. "The lemon buttercream is better, but whatever you say," I shrug, continuing my decorating. I smooth the yellow frosting over the cake. My cousin and I were both messy, but it was totally worth is for the results. 

"What if we use vanilla too?" she asks, holding out a white can. "It's my brother's favorite, and it's his birthday, soooooo..."

"Fine," I grumble, put out. "Papa and I will just eat the lemon by ourselves."

She and I finish the cake and bring it outside where the family is sitting, eager to show off our work. My papa's face lights up when he sees me. I pass the cake to my cousin and trot up to him, placing myself in his lap. "Looks good," he says in his gruff voice, the sound rumbling in his chest. 

"Thanks Papa," I say, grinning. "You'll eat the lemon with me, right?"

"Of course," he hums, winking at me. "Get me a piece, will ya?" I giggle and take off to get him one, excited. His bellowing laughter is all I could hear the rest of the night.

Age: Ten

I walk up to the house, ringing my hands together. Opening the door, I walk into the living room where my papa is sitting. "Hey," I say quietly, sitting on the couch next to him.

"Hey, Princess," he says hoarsely, hugging me to his side. I curl up against him and watch the TV. Papa wasn't in good health. He hadn't been for a while. 

"I love you," I tell him softly, lacing my fingers with his, his large hand making mine disappear. 

"I love you more," he replies.

"You could never!" I challenge, chuckling as he poked me. 

"I loved you before you were born," he informs me, kissing my cheek roughly. 

"Impossible," I scoff. "You could have hated me."

"Never," he jokes. "I could never hate a little princess like you."

"I love you the mostest," I tell him, saying it as if I were a little kid again.

"I believe you," he sighs, closing his eyes to take a nap.

Age: Eleven

I leap into the great lake, screaming as my cousin jumps in after me. This side of the family is not small. Most all the guys are ginormous, and all the females are really big. Everyone had broad shoulders, and lots of muscle on them. Most of the male cousins wrestle, so it didn't help. My other cousins follow us in, shrieking as we fooled around. My dad and uncles were preparing the boat so we could go tubing. Mom and the aunts all watched as play, gossiping with one another.

"Corinne!" two of my cousins called from the boardwalk. "Come join us on the paddle boards!"

Excitedly, I climb up out of the water and take one for myself, noting that neither of my grandparents were with us. They'd come with us on the family reunion, but didn't leave their rental much. I try not to let it get my spirits down and go and play with my female cousins. We paddled around for a good hour before my dad and uncles pulled up with the boat, boarding us. We all took turns on the raft, clinging on for dear life, and falling off into the wake of the boat. My dad was the best captain by far. He could knock any one of us off. When we decided we were done for the day, we went back to our houses to shower before family dinner and fishing.

Grandma and Papa met up with us. Grandma could barely walk, and Papa looked really rough. He still greeted me with a big hug, but he was more reserved. It hurt, but I knew that he wasn't doing well, so I let him alone, running off to fish with my cousins.

A few months after getting home from our reunion, my grandma dies. We fly back out to her funeral, where family from all over the world greet us. I had saved my tears for that day, wanting to be strong for Papa, but he was strong for me that day. He held me close that week. We didn't spend much time apart. 

Age: Thirteen

I sit outside on the deck, reading my book. My dad sits across from me when he receives a phone call from my uncle. My dad is really quiet, which isn't like him, and I already know what had happened. I fight the urge to cry, hiding my face. He's choked up when he replies to my uncle about making funeral plans and arranging a flight. My papa was my dad's hero growing up. They'd been really close, driving trucks across the country together for a good ten years before he'd moved to our state. My dad was the youngest boy in his household, and the most reliable. He and my papa were best friends like no one else I knew. 

"Dad's gone," my dad says, rubbing a hand down his face and looking across the yard, his brown eyes refusing to look at me as he fought the urge to cry. Both of his parents were now gone. His brother soon to follow. He stumbles inside the house, and I cry once he's out of view. I bury my face in my arms, sobbing. 

The back door opens, and my mom steps out. "Hey," she says quietly. 

"How's dad?" I ask, my head hurting with the effort to hold back my tears.

"Gone to cry in the shower," she told me. "How are you?"

"Sad," I respond. "You?"

"I'm okay for the most part," she says, choking up. "My heart is heavy for your dad though," she admits softly. "Your papa was everything to him."

I nod minutely. After a moment, I ask, "How are the boys?"

"Indifferent," she tells me. "I told them and the little one didn't even look up. Your older brother acknowledged it, but didn't say anything. Both just went right back to playing video games."

"Figures," I mutter, rolling my eyes. "They're too sucked up in those things to give a crap."

She gives me a hug before going back inside to prepare food. After ten minutes, my dad comes back out and stares at me for a moment before sitting down next to me. "Are you okay?" he asks me.

"Are you?" I respond, not even answering when he can see the obvious tears.

"He's in a better place now. At least he didn't suffer."

Dad and I just sat there in solemn silence, not ready to go anywhere. Death was a bittersweet thing. They were gone, but healed and with their family in heaven. You miss them greatly, but are happy for them. It adds more meaning to the words: Spend time with your loved ones, because they'll be gone before you know it. We lived a long way apart, but I could have called him one last time, or sent him that one last text. But I didn't. My last words with him were: I miss you so much Papa. I love you more than you know.

And even though he isn't here physically, I still have to say,

I love you Big Red. I'll give you a big hug when I see you again.
I lost my papa today. One of the best men I knew. He was always teasing, and lighthearted. My grandpa had been fighting stage four heart failure for a good long while, but it overcame him. He lost my grandma a year and a half ago, and stuck around for us. We knew it was coming, his passing that is, but it came so quickly. My only regret is that I didn't spend more time with him. Make sure you call, or spend time with your loved ones as often as you can. Life is short. Count your many blessings. Knowing you have blessings is a blessing in and of itself.


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  • May 26, 2020 - 2:43pm (Now Viewing)

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  • Paisley Blue

    Ohhhhh, honey... my heart goes out to you <3 I know there's nothing I can say, but I'm praying for you and your family. This is such a beautiful and sweet piece. Hugs <3

    3 months ago
  • happy butterfly

    I'm sorry for your loss.I truly am.I know it hurts but its beautiful that you can remember him with so many happy and loving memories.This is a beautiful piece. I'm going to have you and your family in my prayers tonight.Sending love.<3<3

    6 months ago
  • Just_A_Memory

    Thank you all -/\-

    6 months ago
  • inkandstars

    awww baby i'm sorry. this is such a heartfelt piece, you literally had me in tears. i hope you feel comforted in your loss.
    sending hugs and calming vibes your way <3<3<3

    6 months ago
  • mia_:)

    I am SO sorry for your loss! Your Papa sounded like a wonderful man and I have no doubt he would have been so proud of this piece! I am sending you all the love!!! <3<3<3

    6 months ago
  • HelpMe512

    I know I'm late, but I'm so sorry. Sending you my love <3

    6 months ago
  • Just_A_Memory

    Thank you all <3

    6 months ago
  • løne wølf

    May he rest in peace and visit you again - adorned in wreaths, a blessing on his lips, and ascending from heaven. My prayers go with you and your family... I am so sorry for your loss <3

    6 months ago
  • poetri

    So sorry for your loss. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. All the best.
    And this is a beautiful piece, btw. I'm sure your Papa would love it.
    <3 <3 <3

    6 months ago
  • Anne Blackwood

    Replying: I thought I was portraying confidence and peace, but I was feeling some longing I guess so you must have noticed that

    6 months ago
  • birthdaycandles

    Sincere condolences for your loss. Life will be hard for a while but know that you are strong enough to overcome it <3 God puts us through hard times to remind us how strong we are. I’ll be thinking of you and your family in my prayers at this time <3 God bless.

    6 months ago
  • mason wong

    I am sorry for your loss. I lost my grandpa last year, and I know it is depressing.

    6 months ago
  • sci-Fi

    I've been through something like this, and I know you'll never fully heal. But you will be okay, after a while. Based on your writing, you're going places. I'm sure your father is so proud of you.
    - Fi <3

    6 months ago
  • joella

    I'm so, so sorry for your loss. sending lots and lots of love <3
    this was a beautiful tribute.

    6 months ago
  • acrosstheuniverse28

    "Knowing you have blessings is a blessing in and of itself" -- thank you so much for sharing. I'm so sorry for your loss, but I know with every fiber of my being that you will see him again! This probably sounds super cliche, but he'll always be with you <3

    6 months ago
  • Anne Blackwood

    Replying: ...how? That's not what I was trying to convey in the piece. You totally read between the lines and I'm a bit unsettled by how well you did.

    6 months ago
  • Deleted User

    I'm really sorry for your loss. I hope you guys are ok!

    6 months ago
  • Samina

    This is so sad. I hope his soul rests in peace. I feel very bad for you. By the end of the piece I am in tears. Please take care of your family and yourself. Losing people is very hard. I am with you if you need any help you could text me. <3 tc. ~Samina.

    6 months ago
  • Anne Blackwood


    6 months ago
  • amazing grace

    Reply: you need to watch the Anne of green gables movie with Megan follows it's way better.

    6 months ago
  • Just_A_Memory

    I feel sad too, but writing about it helps. Thank you @Drishti Bhatia

    6 months ago
  • Deleted User

    I feel really sad for you!

    6 months ago
  • Just_A_Memory

    Thank you everyone! P.s. Sorry for the writing mistakes I keep catching -.-

    6 months ago
  • sunny.v

    i am so, so sorry for your loss. i know that he would love to read how beautiful this is. here’s to that hug you’ll give him when you see him again! <3

    6 months ago
  • amazing grace

    i'm so sorry. i'm crying right now.

    6 months ago
  • a_myriad_of_stars_07

    Losing people is hard.

    6 months ago