Sunday Inspiration: My Father’s 3 Year Anniversary

So much of who I am is because of what I lost.  3 years ago today, my father passed away from colon cancer and it still feels like he was just here yesterday.  No matter how much time goes by, it’s a wound that will never completely heal.  Every day I keep myself occupied and although he is always on my mind and in my heart, I force myself not to think about it all.  But every anniversary, it’s something that I know I have to relive and deal with all over again.  And as difficult as it can be, I think it’s necessary for me. I have debated a lot on writing this post because it’s extremely personal, but  it’s also what has pushed me forward in life these past 3 years.  Sometimes talking about it and writing about it is a release that I need.
Every one deals with loss in their own way.  I was in denial for a really long time because I truly believed that somehow he was going to be ok.  From the time of his diagnosis to the last few days of his life, I had watched him deteriorate.  It was like looking at a completely different person and I just couldn’t believe what the cancer was doing to him.  My father had rarely been sick a day in his life.  He always took care of himself.  I think that’s why it was so shocking to us all when we found out about his diagnosis.  I relive that day over and over in my mind.  I tried to be so strong for him but my entire world was falling apart.

When we are younger we think that our parents are invincible.  We don’t think that anything can ever happen to them.  And I am so grateful that I had him while I was growing up.  He was there for some really big moments in my life.  But then I think of all the moments that he is missing now and the ones he will miss in the future and I am filled with a deep sadness that I can’t put into words.  This anniversary has been really hard on me and I think it’s because I am finally at a good place in my life and he’s not here physically.  
The last week of his life was spent in the hospital and so many of us were with him.  I talked my father through his death.  He kept holding on for me and my sister but I had to let him know that we would be ok.  It was one of the hardest things that I’ve ever had to do.  I watched my father take his last breath and I felt his last heart beat.  I held on to one of his hands and had my other hand on his heart.  It’s a memory that will live with me forever.  In his last few seconds he smiled twice and I knew that he went peacefully.  That image will never leave my mind.  It stays with me always. I am thankful that I was there with him in the room when it happened because I think it would have been worse for me if I hadn’t been able to say goodbye.

My father was a principle and I was blown away at the amount of people that attended his wake. I met so many teachers that he had worked with as well as his students and they all said the same thing about him.  They told me that he was such an inspiration and that he had inspired them in so many ways.  That really stuck with me.  He left behind such an amazing legacy and being an inspiration is something that people will always remember him for.  He inspired me in so many ways and he taught me so much about life and myself.  He always pushed me to be a better person. I realized in that moment that I wanted to continue that for him.  He is the reason I got my inspire tattoo.  I wanted a word that represented my father and something that would keep me motivated every single day.  This is why I always say that I want to inspire and why it’s so important to me.  If I ever have children it’s something that I want to instill in them as well.

If you have never lost a loved one, it’s difficult to understand how it truly changes you completely.  I am not the same person I was 3 years ago.  I look at my life then and I look at it now and I am really proud of myself for finally going after what I want.  I am more motivated and determined than ever.  I am filled with so much positivity.  I am no longer afraid of uncertainty.  My father was the strongest person that I have ever known and watching him fight for his life the way he did made me realize that I can do anything in life.  I am me because of him.

My angel got his wings on 8.25.10
I know that he is watching over me and continues to protect and guide me in life. 
Missing and loving you always papa bear.
“I carry your heart.  I carry it in my heart.”


  1. I started crying when I finished reading this. So touching!

    I have to say that you really inspire me 🙂

  2. this brought tears to my eyes. my grandpa died 2 yrs ago and even though he's not my parent, he was still very close to me. always there for me since i was a baby. i can't imagine how you went through this and i know this was heartbreaking. my prayers are with you Naty.


    • Thanks so much love. It hasn't been easy but I'm doing my best. I'm sure it was difficult for you too losing your grandfather. They are both watching over us xo

  3. Dab

    Babe the blessings of your father are always with you that is the only reason that you manage to pull everything together so well, and be an inspiration for us,
    You are strong,kind hearted ,brave and so so loving all because of the virtues of your dad in you; you will always belong to him and no one can take that from you ever,
    He's with you at every step you take,
    You always bring out something which just touch my heart, and give me the strength to fight myself when am stubborn..
    Thanks for being in touch love:-*
    God bless you

    • Your words are always so sweet. Thank you so much because it really means so much to me and I really appreciate it! xo

    • Dab

      Your welcome,angel…xoxo!!

  4. That's so sad… My thoughts are with you and your family!
    Much love ♥

  5. I am so sorry for your lose. My father also passed away 8 months ago. He was my inspiration to design. A father's love can't be replaced

    • I am sorry for yours too. It definitely can't be replaced. Stay strong and keep going after your dreams xo

  6. This really touched me. Ive been watching your blog since 2011 and I must say that you are truly my inspiration. My daddy passed when I was 3 and I have to say that you are blessed beyond what you can imagine to have been able to grow up with your dad. I didn't have that opportunity. I used to be so mad about it, I used to be envious of my family who could tell stories of him and who were taught things by him. Now, I try to learn as much as I can so that I can carry him in everything that I do. I'm only 20 so I have a little ways to go. I am still growing and learning but Naty, I sincerely love you for sharing this. I know that I'm not alone in how I feel for my dad. As daddies are their daughters first loves right? 🙂 Thank you from all of my heart for being my inspiration and my Angel along with my dad.
    Love you:)
    Ash <3

    • Thank you so much for your sweet message it really touched me. I am so happy to know that I have been an inspiration to you. I'm so sorry that you didn't have the chance to have your father in your life growing up. I can imagine how difficult it has been for you. But continue to hold him close to your heart and carry him with you every day. Go after your dreams and never give up xo

  7. I can relate to this so much! I'm sorry for your dads lose and coming from someone who has lost someone very close I know nothing can make you feel better; when those bad days come around when all you can think of is them. I lost my grandpa going on 4 years now and it still feels like it was yesterday. I was also at his bed side when he passed and I remember that day as the worst day of my life, I remember the time and exactly how I said good bye to him, and like you I wouldn't have felt right if I wasn't in that room with him and my family to say our goodbyes. To me it feels as if it's all a lie and sometimes I want to just drive to his house and see him working on his house or the garden, but then I realize he won't be there. My grandpa has also been my inspiration and when times are hard he's what keeps me going. Making him proud makes everything worth it. I know he's looking down on me and helping me get through hard times. Thanks for sharing this post. 🙂

  8. I guess like you say "we will never understand " but this to me was such am amazing story seen how much it inspire you to move forward gives me hope. You are such a beautiful and strong woman!!

  9. They say your parents live through you as you grow. They take care of you and then life takes a turn and your the one taking care of them. Your father is strong because you are strong. Without sadness we wouldn't know happiness. We all have a gift in life and some just open their gift later than others. You found your gift through the inspiration your father has given you and the many others he has inspired in his life. It's amazing to read the purity in your story. How great is a person at what he or she chooses to do in life, but how much greater he or she becomes when someone motivates that person to another level. Continue the path of inspiration.

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