My Dad and I were always very close, as a little girl, his last child and second daughter, he decided that if he could not have a son, he would settle for a tomboy. I hunted and fished with my Dad and we played baseball and football together. I wanted to be a boy until I became a teenager and realized that being a tomboy was not half as much fun as being a girl. I guess you could say that I looked at the boys differently when the hormones kicked in.
My Mother and I never got along very well, she and I were like oil and water, we did not mix. I love her very much, but we just had personality conflicts. My Dad always worried about that and always tried to bring us together and see to it that our petty arguments did not last too long.
Life went on, I grew up, married and had two sons. My Dad was in Heaven, he had a son-in-law that was his best friend and two grandsons who could now hunt and fish with him, life did not get any better as far as he was concerned.
Dad retired young, he was only 62 and in very good health. He spent many days at our house and he loved to be here on our farm, there was always something going on that he enjoyed.
Sixteen years of retirement, sixteen years of enjoyment--he was a blessed man. He even died the way he wanted to, in his sleep, very suddenly, no sickness, just one minute he was here and the next second he was gone.
That was a very hard time for all of us. We were devastated. We could not believe that he was gone. I did not sleep for at least three days after Daddy's funeral. I would just walk around the house all night, I would try to lie down, but then I would have to get up and pace the floor.
Daddy had been dead for five days and I finally managed to fall asleep one afternoon on the couch in the den. I woke up and looked in front of me and there Daddy was, he was sitting on the coffee table right in front of me. He was just sitting there staring at me and when I sat up, he looked at me and said, "Baby, if you loved me, be good to your Mother." He then just disappeared. He was there, no one can tell me he wasn't.
I called my Mother and told her what happened. When she answered the phone, it was like someone was watching over me and all the arguments and disagreements I had ever had with my Mother were gone. Since that day, we are closer than I could ever have imagined.
About six months after Daddy's Last Visit, I had a dream. In this dream, Daddy told me "I was there, look at the table." I got up in the middle of the night and came downstairs to look at where Daddy sat on the coffee table, the wood on that end of the table had fine lines in it, it looks almost crinkled. I had never noticed that before, the rest of the table is still in perfect condition. That table will never leave this house, it is my Daddy's final resting place for me.