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Every time I start one of these, I fail. I try to tell myself you'll get one for yourself one of these times. That I'll suddenly find a way to summarize what you and I shared for so long, but never enough. But the stark reality of the situation is that I simply can't. There's too much to attempt to recall, too much to try my damndest to explain to people who just won't understand, because it was our thing. Ours, and now mine. And that, in and of itself, is not okay.
I'll be honest, in the nine years without you (It's still unbelievable to me that it's been this long), there isn't a day that I don't think about the fact you're gone from this world. You left at a time where I was just starting the rest of the formative years of my life, and while I had, and still have, the important people in my life around me to guide and aid me wherever I need it, there's nothing like time you and I shared together.
These memories are mine. They've shaped me into the man I've become without you. Whether people understand, and whether you see it, wherever it is you've ended up, I hope you know that I am nothing, if not for your love and care. I miss you every single day that I have, mainly because you don't have any for yourself any longer. And every time I'm back round Dad's, I look up at you and say hello—because it's all I can do anymore.
I'm sorry I hid from you. I am sorry that I was not present for your final moments with us. I am sorry for not visiting in hospital. I am sorry for all the times I misbehaved. I hope you know that. You were always forgiving, and loving, unconditionally. You taught me I was worthy of that kind of love, which is something I struggle to remember these days.
You were my favourite person growing up, because every weekend with you was a gift for me. Being your grandson was the greatest privilege I ever had in this life of mine. And I am always grateful for the time we shared. I thought that maybe I'd be able to write this without crying, without letting the emotions affect me, but I realize that when I cry about you being gone, it's because I want to be able to feel that pain again, because it means it's real, and that it's okay.
I'd like to think that every day gets easier, and while they have, because I still carry you with me everywhere I go, I do have my bad days. I've come to terms with that now, especially around this time of year. These days are harder without you, when we're all supposed to be together as a family, when you left us. Left me. But I keep you close and in my heart and mind, and it's enough. I just know I'll see you again, when my time comes too.
Above all, just know this: I love you, more than anyone in the world. I loved and will always love you. I love all the things I remember about you, your infectious laugh, the way a room just lit up just because you were in it. How you brought our tiny family together on every single holiday and made them all extra special. Our Sunday mornings and afternoons spent in the sunroom, the list is infinitely expansive, and it's those moments I won't ever forget.
Nine years on, and it still feels like yesterday.
I love you, Goose.
Now, and Always,