One of the things about living in a rural area is that even though it is Halloween and we had treats all ready, no children laughing in costumes crossed our threshold, which is something that I do miss. Oh well, that is just part of living out here.
More rain, but Bennie loves playing in the puddles and there are plenty of them, so he was happy.
Me, I am tired of it and I decided to do another run on the treadmill. I know boring, but I had a plan that I couldn’t do if I ran outside, so things worked out pretty well.
Planned Workout Description: Treadmill – 3 miles in Altra Duo (Blue/Yellow) and 3 Miles in NB 1400 v6
Time of Day: 9:54
• Type of Workout: Both runs were easy, but the 1400’s was purposely a bit quicker just because I feel faster in them.
• Running Streak Day #: 7
• Weather: Indoor
Variables that impacted the run: Planned change of shoes at 3.0 miles, GI issues
Comments: Both runs were at easier paces and were just typical treadmill runs. Keep running, do the time and miles until the screen says you completed that number of miles.
Run #1 – All at 6.8 mph
Run #2 – All at 7.0 mph – although I really did want to up the pace and if I had I would have blamed it on the shoes. 😉
Altra Duo v1 (Women’s Model) – (7.0) – Yep and I do believe that there is a difference in the firmness of the women’s model versus the men’s Duo model that I have.
The two runs that I have done in them just feel more cush. Perhaps it is because most women runners would typically be a bit lighter than I am at this shoe size and the shoe needs to be a bit softer to meet the lighter weight requirements.
They did better on the treadmill than the men’s version for me as well, through the 3.0 miles I used them for there was none of that issue I have with my right foot discomfort.
Also surprisingly, they seem to fit my weirdly shaped feet better than the men’s version too. So I can see them getting a few more runs than they have lately, they are intriguing, but I also have to be careful with how much I run in the zero drop shoes. The laces will also be changed out, hating those skinny laces.
New Balance 1400 v6 – (30.2) – I actually just wanted to get them to the 30 mile threshold which is my cue to do a review. Yeah, I do my race/go fast shoes at that mileage versus 50, because I don’t run that much in them.
They did exactly what I expect of them. I put them on, lace them up and run comfortably in them, wherever I am running.
How did this run move me towards my goal(s)? More miles on the legs, finding out the shoes that work and getting ready to review another pair.
If you read my previous post, you know that I am coming back from the dead according to the powers that be. Hehehee, so my run seems to be pretty fitting, because when I got to the end of my treadmill 5K time trial, I was feeling pretty close to being dead.
It definitely was a killer workout. 😉
However, for a dead guy I ran a pretty decent time for a 5K.
Planned Workout Description: Today is a scheduled easy day, but I did that yesterday, so I wanted to do a treadmill 5K time trial
Time of Day: 11:27a
• Type of Workout: Time Trial
• Rating (1-4): 3
• Running Streak Day #: 6
• Weather: Indoor
Variables that impacted the run: Running on the treadmill
Comments: The warm-up felt good.
Then I set the treadmill to 8.6 mph and got ready to go for as long as I could, then slow down a little and get back to it.
I got through 1.6 miles before things got really hard, but I kept at it. This is one of the hardest treadmill workouts that I have done in a long time, but I got to the end.
I did have to laugh, that wonderful heart rate monitor on my Garmin 35 said I got up in the 188 range, which for an old guy is a real killer. I still don’t really have a lot of confidence in how accurate wrist based h/r is and this didn’t help that view.
That 21:19 time is the fastest I have run a 5K in long time and would definitely be my post-60 PR if I had run it in a race.
When I got done, I was pretty much toast. Initially I had thought about going outside for a 3.0 mile cool-down run, since the sun had come out and it was in the mid 50’s.
However, I was just too wiped after finishing to actually go for another and I just went home, ate lunch and took a nap. The joys of being retired.
Shoes Worn: Nike Zoom Fly SP (72.3) – They just did everything that I asked of them.
How did this run move me towards my goal(s)? It gives me confidence that I can run a good 5K, maybe not this fast outside in a race, but I won’t freak out if I am running sub 7:00 paces through the splits.
A Mark Twain once said something along the lines of…
“The reports of my death are greatly exaggerated.”
Today Mary (my wife) got a letter from a relatively local Veterans organization expressing their condolences on the passing of her husband and giving some instructions on what to do next.
Now there is a small problem, I am still here and not ghostwriting this post.
This immediately opened a can of worms, no not the kind that crawl into coffins either, you see I share my name with now deceased father and the only differences were that I am a Junior and he was a Senior, but he had never served in the military.
It is not the first time that this has happened, but it was the one that could have caused me more than my share of problems and having been a personnel specialist in the Coast Guard I knew just how big they could grow.
I immediately called the Coast Guard talked with a coupe of people and they had me dead as well.
We got that straightened out and by tomorrow I will be officially back amongst the living retirees. A very good thing in my mind.
Then I got a hold of the person in charge of the place that contacted the Coast Guard and sent the letter to Mary. We talked for a while and got things straightened out on their end. They are volunteers and do a big service, but we did discuss ways to ensure that it doesn’t happen again.
I can chuckle about it now, but for a few hours, I will say that it was a pain in the arse, but I am still here being one to too many people.
Yes, Harold L. Shaw, Jr., the guy that retired from the Coast Guard is still alive.
The Harold L Shaw that passed away on October 18, 2019 was my father. Actually I think he is laughing his arse off right about now and I am smiling too. You got me one last time Dad. 🙂
Yep, the Nike Zoom Fly SP another pair of shoes that are a couple of years old, but are fairly new to me and have been one of the more impressive shoes in my rotation in a long time.
These are the first pair of running shoes that I purposely do not run in as often as I want to, because I want to keep them for when I want to run fast for me.
In other words they have become a shoe to keep.
Just for reference my stats are: 62 years young, 5’7” tall, around 155 pounds (+/-) 5 pounds depending on the time of year and supposed to wear size 8.0 mens shoe, but that rarely happens.
Why I got them:
I have been looking closely at the Zoom Fly SP ever since they came out as an cheaper alternative to the Vapor Fly 4%, but even at their original price tag of $160, I was not going to get them.
I do not race enough to justify spending big bucks on “go faster” shoes. So I waited to see them at the Nike Factory Outlet stores or on eBay.
After running in the Zoom Fly v1 for a while this Spring, I knew that I really wanted the SPs.
So I got a decent, not great deal on a pair through eBay. When I got them, I quickly figured out that the SP version of the Zoom Fly is a much closer fit to the the Vapor Fly line than Zoom Fly v1 was in my opinion and definitely a racer, whereas I felt v1 and v2 (FlyKnit) were more of a fast trainer.
What are these shoe’s purpose in my rotation?
Without a doubt the Zoom Fly SP are my “go faster” shoes. They look and feel fast on my feet.
What kinds of runs have I done in them so far?
I have pretty much stuck with faster running in the Zoom Fly SP. I want to know that when I put them on, that I am planning to run faster than I usually do. While I can run slower in them and have in warm-ups with no issues, that is not what I use them for.
How have they worked out for me? The Nike Zoom Fly SP has done what I wanted. I run fast for me in them and do it mostly comfortably as long as I wear thin socks.
While not as light as a pair of Vapor Fly’s, they are at least in the ballpark and in line with other “marathon” racers that I now use more as my race day/go faster shoes. Most racers that are sub 6 ounces just don’t have enough cushion for the old body any more.
• Do the Nike Zoom Fly SP run true to size? I am between sizes 7.5 to 8.0 according to the Brannock and have skinny heels, with a Tailor’s Bunionette on the outside of my right forefoot. The size 8.5 fits great and I probably could get away with a size 8.0 if I wanted a true performance fit.
However, at this point in my life, I am more concerned about comfort than a little extra weight.
• Are they wide enough in the toe box? The ZF SP are on the borderline of what I could wear for a half marathon or even a 10 miler based on the toe box and my preferences. While they have not bothered all that much on longer runs, I still have not done a double-digit run in them to find out how they will feel on a longer run to me.
• How does the heel fit? I have skinny heels and the heel locks in perfectly.
I have had zero issues with blisters or discomfort from the shoes rubbing-which is what I expect from shoes that work well for me.
Feel (different from fit)
The Zoom Fly SP is a softer/cushioned race day shoe, that I love the feel of when running fast. With the “plastic not carbon” plate there is still a snap that is lacking in my other shoes and one that I miss when I have been running in them and then switch back to more traditional shoes.
When I am getting tired during a faster run, my form deteriorates and I land even more on my heels and with the amount of cushion in the Zoom Fly SP, I still feel protected.
Although on a newer cushioned track, they almost feel too cushioned and made me wonder if I was loosing too much energy due to the combined softness.
However, when I compared times, effort levels and heart rates, I found that the ZF SP were the best shoes that I had during the tests. So I use them when I want to go faster.
Do the Zoom Fly SP run quiet or slap the road? While there is a lot of rubber on the outsole, there is something about the way I run in them that they are very quiet.
There is confusion/controversy on whether the midsole is made from Lunarlon or React? I am not sure which one it actually is, but at the same time it doesn’t matter when it comes down to how it feels.
They are cushioned, but feel as though they have a nice snap to them that I really love. Although I do worry a bit about when I get tired and my form deteriorates, how the super soft heel will support my gait as the distances increase? That is something that I need to answer before I do a longer race in them.
I do like shoes with toe spring, because I have ankles that are as flexible as two 2×4’s nailed together and the Zoom Fly SP have plenty of it.
• Are they rock collectors? I run a lot on dirt roads and road shoulders that have a LOT of pebbles that tend to get wedged in the outsoles of many shoes. With the Zoom Fly SP I have run on the dirt road down-back and on roads, but while they pick up a few pebbles it really isn’t a concern.
• Are the Zoom Fly SP a three season outsole and then only good for indoor running in the winter. I would not run in the SPs much at all outside in nasty conditions, the outsole just is not designed to run race paces and handle bad weather. While I have run successfully in them in the rain, hard cornering can be adventurous.
• Is there apparent wear, where? There is not apparent wear on the SPs after almost 70 miles. I really expect them to be usable in racing or shorter training runs for quite a while.
My thinking is that the Zoom Fly SP is that the outsole will last as long as I will be using the shoes.
• Do they have sewn on overlays or are they welded? The upper is a simple upper that doesn’t have any extra overlays which in my opinion – less is more.
When I was down visiting with Sam W earlier this month I got to look closely at a pair of Nike Vapor Fly Next % and the uppers on the SPs were more similar than other versions of the Zoom Fly. Which surprised both of us.
Also the foot is well held by the lacing design, but is comfortable enough that my Tailor’s Bunionette is not bothered as much as usual in “race day” shoes. A very good thing.
• Laces. I did change out the original laces because they were too long and wacked against my other leg, which was a distraction that I didn’t want to deal with when I am running faster.
I like the appearance of the white background with colorful highlights. It is rather old school in appearance and says when I see them that I need to run faster.
Would I get them again?
• I am looking around for another pair to put the closet for these wear out. I will find them and be very happy about it.
Although I would love to get my hands on a pair of Vapor Fly 4% v1 or Next %, I am pretty happy with how I run in the Zoom Fly SP.
The Reality is That
While the Nike Zoom Fly SP are not in the same league as the Vapor Fly line, I run great and comfortably in them. Today I did a treadmill 5K time trial in 21:19, which if done in a race would have been the fastest 5K I have run in the last 10 years.
So yes, I run well in them and pretty fast for me. Do the shoes make a difference – definitely. Do they improve my performance – yep. Enough to make me an elite athlete – nope. 😉
Which means I can see another pair of Nike Zoom Fly SP if I can’t find a pair of Nike Vapor Fly Next % under the Christmas tree in a few months, because I just run well in them and they do not bother my feet.
That is the important thing. Although I do want to find out if the Next % make that big a difference. Hehehehe.
Disclosure of Material Connection: These were a personal purchase on eBay and I do not represent any corporate or private interests for advertising or marketing purposes. The opinions I have expressed are my own and your experience with the product might be different. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
The weather has been gray and drizzling it seems like forever…not really, but the sunshine has been sadly lacking around here for a while.
So yeah, yesterday’s run was one of those where you go out the door, do the run, cool down and get back inside the house. A get it done run.
Planned Workout Description: Normally Tuesdays are a faster workout day, but since I did a harder 3.0 miles on Monday, I decided to go with 5.0 miles at an easy pace.
Time of Day: 10:17a
Course: Notta Road O/B
Time of Run: 46:04
Running Streak Day #: 5
Weather: Overcast/Drizzle, 50*F – feels like 48*F, Humidity 89%, Wind 5 mph from SSE
Variables that impacted the run: No sun, drizzle, wet roads, slime on dirt road
Comments: A get it done run, where my mile splits were very consistent: 9:07, 9:04, 9:13, 9:15, 9:11. Other than that nothing really stood out about the run.
Shoes Worn: Hoka Mach 1 (25.1) – This was the most comfortable run I have had in the Mach 1’s so far. Although my heel was still a little sore where the blister action happened when I first wore them. I also used my spacer for my right foot little toe and that seemed to help with the comfort factor in them.
How did this run move me towards my goal(s)? More miles when I really would have preferred to have sat in the recliner and relaxed.
Cardio Total: 3.72
Non Running Comments: Mary and I went out to Slates for dinner for the anniversary of meeting 19 years ago on 10/29. It was a nice evening out and the meal was good, the company better. 🙂
With the drizzle still going on and the wonderful low 40’s temp, instead of beating my head against the proverbial wall, I decided to head into Planet Fitness and do my run on the treadmill.
It isn’t that couldn’t have run outside, I just felt like running in short/t-shirt today.
Planned Workout Description: Something between 5 and 7 miles at an easier pace.
• Day: Monday
• Time of Day: 11:13a & 11:43a
• Type of Workout: #1 was just running comfortably at 7.0 mph and #2 I decided pick up the pace a bit with 5 x .1 strides @ 9.1 mph or faster, with 6.7 mph recovery.
• Rating (1-4): #1 – 2, #2 – 3
• Running Streak Day #: 4
• Weather: Indoor
Variables that impacted the run: Didn’t really have a plan for what I actually wanted to do, besides get some more miles on the Mach 1.
Comments: Run #1 I set the speed to 7.0 mph and kept it there the entire run. Unfortunately, underneath the Tailor’s Bunionette was getting very sore. Now, this is not an uncommon thing for me on the treadmill in a lot of shoes.
I believe the cause is that when I maintain a constant speed that my foot strike remains too consistent and I tend to land on the outside of my right foot too much, which aggravates that area after a coupe miles.
That is what I figure happened today. However, since that long run and the 5.0 miler a coupe days later a few weeks ago, that area has been more tender than usual. So instead of bulling through for a couple more miles, I stopped to go change shoes.
Run #2 – After putting on my New Balance 1400 v6, I decided that I would go a little faster: Mile 1 – 7.5 mph and Mile 2 – 7.6 mph. After that I was still feeling really good, so I did 5 x .1 (9.1, 9.1, 9.2, 9.3, 9.6), with 6.7 mph recoveries.
I was pretty sure that the 1400s would be fine and I got lucky and while they felt a bit off from usual, it was not enough to slow me down too much.
Shoes Worn: Hoka Mach 1 (20.1) – The Mach 1 is not a good choice for treadmilling and I did change out the insoles one more time to an old pair of Pearl Izumi that I know work well with my feet. It may be that the Mach 1 is not a perfect fit with my feet. But damn I do love the way that I run in them. A complaint that I have had with every Hoka shoe I have run in, in the past with the exception of the Carbon X.
New Balance 1400 v6 (27.2) – The 1400s are a shoe that I know that I can run comfortably and well in. They are not fussy about which socks I wear and do well on the treadmill or outside.
How did this run move me towards my goal(s)? Learned more about the Mach 1s and how I can use them. Also got some faster/quality miles in after I changed my shoes.
I really, really wanted to take the day off. After yesterday’s longer run and blister session on the lower part of my left heel, I didn’t have a lot of motivation. Then when you add in a cold, miserable rain with temps hovering just under 40*F at the house…well it was an easy choice.
I am not a big fan of running outside when it is cold and raining, I have had some pretty bad experiences in those conditions in the past. Plus as I get older, cold does affect me more, so I tend to find a treadmill and prefer the running in shorts/t-shirt thing.
Which meant that, I went outside for my run. Sometimes you just have to do things that you find hard, just because they are harder for you to do.
Planned Workout Description: A 4.0 mile easy/recovery run to check out how changing the insoles in the Mach 1 felt after yesterday’s blister.
Time of Day: 10:57a
Course: Town Office 4.0 Miler
Time of Run: 37:20
Type of Workout: Recovery
Running Streak Day #: 4
Weather: Rain, 42*F, Feels like 42*F, Humidity 83%, Wind 2 mph from E
Variables that impacted the run: Rain on dirt road, extra clothes that were soaked, reduced vision
Comments: Getting out the door was tougher than any other part of the run. Yeah, that was an understatement to say the least.
However, once I got going, it really wasn’t all that bad. Yeah, it was raining, yeah it was chilly and yeah there was some slimy stuff on the dirt road, but I was dressed just right something over my ears, a hat to keep the rain sort of off my glasses, gloves for my hands, a wind jacket to well it soaked through pretty quick.
I never really pushed the pace and kept plugging along. Well until I got back to the Circle and I pushed a little harder, but nothing crazy.
Initially, the blister on my left heel from yesterday complained a little, but after a few minutes I kind of forgot about it and by the end it was not an issue.
When I got done, yeah I was soaked through, a little muddy on the shoes and back of the legs, but I did have a nice smile on my face and was glad that I ran outside today.
It was one of those runs where you don’t run all that fast, but is one that helps you strengthen your resolve about just running and having a little fun a long the way.
Yep, I might have found a mud puddle or two and stomped through them, while laughing just a bit. I know, I know I am a crazy old bastard, but I am going to have some fun along them crazy journey I am on.
Shoes Worn: Hoka Mach 1 (17.0) — After yesterday’s run in the Mach 1 I needed a confidence builder in them. There was just something off with my left foot and the stock insole, so switching those out was something I did this morning.
No issues this morning with the shoes and they felt fine during the run. I am finding that they are a bit finicky about what socks they work best with and I am still looking for the ones that feel good when wearing them.
The jury is still out on how much I am going to actually like the fit of the Mach 1, but I know that I love the way they feel when I run in them.
The Mach 1 did a decent job on the slime and wet dirt down-back. Better than most of the shoes I have worn lately anyway that were not trail shoes, so that was encouraging.
How did this run move me towards my goal(s)? Nice recovery run. Different insoles made a big difference in how my left foot felt while running.
Okay, some chores, dog walking and then I got to set off for a longer run over in Waterville.
It was kind of interesting to say the least.
Planned Workout Description: I really wanted to do 10, but I kind of figured that I would be happy with 7-8 miles.
Time of Day: 11:21a
Course: Waterville to China Road and through Head of Falls dirt road
Time of Run: 1:10:15
Type of Workout: Easy Longer Run
Running Streak Day #: 2
Weather: Clear, 51*F – Feels like 51*F, Humidity 62%, Wind 4 mph from N
Variables that impacted the run: Put the original insoles back in Mach’s
Comments: It was actually a pretty routine run, I was enjoying the shoes and everything was going great, until I got over by the Body Shop on the China Road, I bet you can tell just about where it happened. 🙂
When a Big F#$%ing Dog came out and attempted to see what one of my chicken wings tasted like.
Luckily he misjudged the backswing by just enough and when I turned around.
That backed him off just enough and then when I started yelling to get the f-ing dog out of here, waving my arms and stuff, he figured that I wasn’t worth the effort. Besides his human was calling him and he loped off. I was glad, because this was one of those dogs that would have made mincemeat out me.
That might have gotten the old heart thump a little harder.
After that I thought about the many different ways that 150+ pound dog would have torn me up and I know that there would not have been a lot I could have done to prevent it, if he had decided to attack. I gotta start carrying pepper spray again. These kind of encounters are just happening way too often lately.
After that I didn’t really pick up the pace, but when I got to McDonald’s I did have to stop for a quick break. No big deal, but I think that that encounter might have scared the crap out of me, more than I wanted to admit to myself at the time. 😉
I ran down to the 2 cent bridge and then headed up the paths a ways. However, I never realized that there was a dirt road that goes along the river once you get to the end of the Head of Falls developed area.
It was kind of nice not to have to fight traffic. I went up to the split took a left, went through the railroad yard and then crossed College Ave to get over to Ticonic. I have a feeling that I will run the rest of that course some other time just to see where it leads.
Once I got to the end of Ticonic, I had to stop and take off my right sock. There was something going on with my foot and, I really didn’t think it was the shoe.
Once I took off the sock and started running again, the problem with the right foot disappeared. So that was a good thing, but the Mach 1’s are not a shoe that I would want to go barefoot regularly in.
However, my left foot began to bother in the heel area between the heel pad and the heel. A place I have never had any issues before. I didn’t stop to check it out during the run, but after, I found that I had developed a blister there???
Not sure where that came from or why, but will take a look at the insole and compare it others that haven’t bothered me to see if it is shaped weird or something.
Inspite of all the feet issues going on, when I got over to Cool Street, I was able to pick it up a little and felt good to the end of the run.
Shoes Worn: Hoka Mach 1 (13.04) – I loved the way they felt underfoot for the first 5-6 miles, then when I had to take off my sock, I noticed that my left heel was bothering. It was a pretty good sized blister between the heel pad and heel.
Otherwise the size 9.0 is a size too big, but I do really love how they feel when I am running in them. I didn’t feel any unusual heel slippage in them and when I ran sockless my right foot didn’t have any issues. Which means some sleuthing on my part to figure out why the blister formed on the left foot.
I do like the Mach 1, but not crazy about blisters, we will see where this goes too.
How did this run move me towards my goal(s)? Nice longer run, where I reinforced that I like the way that Hoka shoes feel underfoot. Now to figure out why I got a blister on my left foot.
First off, Happy Birthday to the love of my life Mary. I am so very fortunate to have her be a part of my life. Here is to many, many more wonderful birthdays for you that we can share together.
Life does continue on and if you have been reading here over the past week it has not been easy. However, there comes a point where enough is enough of the grief stricken wee lad stuff. Oh, I know all too well that there will still be some rough patches for me, but at the same time my Father would have kicked my arse if I kept whining and bellyaching over him being gone for much longer.
I have written my blog posts, gotten a lot of stuff out of my head, onto the screen and been able to look at my thoughts and how they sound to me. Then I got to think about what I want to do and how I want want to feel. Now it is time to move on.
The rough patches will come and go as I move through the grieving process, but it is also time to live life and be happy with the life I have.
I walked Bennie, fed the crows, did morning chores, walked the dogs, ran, did errands, walked dogs, cleaned the bathroom, ate pizza, had a hard cider and potato chips with it. Now I am writing blog post.
Yep, a pretty normal day in my mostly boring life and it was pretty nice to get back to this routine again.
Variables that impacted the run: Writing a long blog post and then thinking about it during the run, right hip a bit sore, wearing Mach 1 for the first time.
Comments: This was just a run to run, nothing more, nothing less. I ran just how I felt, slower when I wanted to and faster when I thought it was a good idea. So it was not the most evenly paced run I have ever done.
Also it probably was not a great idea to wear both a new pair of running shoes and new style of socks on the same run. The Mach 1’s were fine, the socks not so well.
While running I got to thinking about running, after clearing a bunch of other junk out of the noggin and know that I have got to take control of my pie-hole a lot better and sit down to create a goal for my running moving forward.
Things are going to get back to as normal as they get around the house fairly quickly and while I keep saying that I am going to start racing and getting a little more involved in my running club at some point. I haven’t.
I know myself pretty well and if I do not go ahead and pre-register for races, I will always find a reason to not do them. Solution – pre-register for some races. Now to figure out which ones. 😉
Shoes Worn: Hoka Mach v1 (5.03) For a first run they did quite well, considering that I was less than impressed with the new socks that I paired them with. The Mach 1’s were quiet, comfortable, but I will need to change the insole back to the stock insole.
I had worn them around the house and thought that the right foot was going to be an issue so I put in a thinner insole. Once I got running in them, that was not an issue and I would have preferred the extra cushioning (one of the reasons that I got them in the first place).
Good first impressions.
How did this run move me towards my goal(s)? I ran.
Cardio Total: 3.72
Non Running Comments: Time to enjoy the life I have and figure out a decent race schedule.
I started writing this last night and just could not focus enough to write decently about something we all go through when a loved parent dies and you say goodbye to them that day.
So I stopped trying to write, moped around the house a little, reflected back on the day I had spent with my family, thought some more about things I had always wanted to say to Dad, but never did and made it through the evening.
This morning after a good night’s sleep; my brain is a bit clearer, the eyes aren’t leaking as much and I can focus a bit more. It is time to try and write down some of the feelings that I am going through.
Being there when my father took his last breath was one of the most difficult things that I have ever done, but as difficult as that was, I also knew it was time for him to go and to stop the suffering he was enduring.
His passing over to the other side and now being with my mother and the rest of our family was a good thing for him.
However, saying goodbye to him yesterday was something that I did not expect to be as difficult as it turned out to be for me. While we were spreading his ashes the first time, it really hit home that I would never see my father again and judging from the reactions around me, my family felt the same way.
Yes, it was the finality of knowing that I would not be talking with him over lunch or driving him someplace anymore. I didn’t realize how important it was to me to know that I could go up and be able to listen to the stories of his life that he shared with me, the frank discussions we had about just about everything and just spending time with him.
Yep, I took it for granted that he would always be there. Now he is not.
That life getting in the way stuff that seems to happen to us all, especially when it comes to spending enough time with people you love, but do not live with you.
Saying goodbye was definitely made easier having Steve, Diana, Barb and my nephew Grady there.
However, at the same time saying goodbye to Dad was one of those things I had to do for myself, no one else can do it for you – just like everyone else.
Due to how things worked out, I got to spend a lot of time in my truck to think about how I was feeling and by the end of the day, I thought that I had a pretty good handle on my emotions. However, as you can tell from the beginning, not completely, but pretty good. This morning things are a lot better.
Emotions – something that I am not all that good at showing publicly or even to others who are close to me most of the time. So it was a good thing that Bennie was the only passenger with me. He listened good, put his head on my leg when I had some leaky eyes and put up with me all day.
Enough of that stuff.
I for one and am fairly certain that my family will agree, that is was a good thing that Dad did not want all the fuss and muss that goes into having a public wake. Something where the community is able to express their sorrow for our loss.
While the people attending a wake are usually (but not always) well intentioned. Quite honestly from my point of view and experience, it is more painful for family members to stand there and listen to the stories, platitudes and other comments that so often do not resemble the actual person that they knew who died.
I really believe it was easier for us to remember Dad privately. We are not the most politically or socially correct family and I have a feeling that some of the people who really do not know my family would have been aghast at some of the comments that were made yesterday or probably would have been said by us to others, if there had been a wake.
However, it is who we are and I have a feeling that Mom and Dad were laughing their asses off at some of the comments that were made over the course of the day. I know that I laughed and chuckled more than a few times.
When I left my Sister’s house at the end of the day, it was with conflicting emotions. Dad’s death has brought changes to our lives and moving forward, I am sure that his being gone will result in even more change.
We had been family again for past week, but unfortunately, as we have grown into adults, like most families in today’s world we have grown apart by the miles, professions, lifestyles and our own immediate family obligations. Our lives and worlds have gone in multiple directions and I suppose that it will continue to be that way.
However, I know that we will all miss Dad, of that I have no doubt and while each of us had a different relationship with him, I know that he loved us all for who we were.
Though our feelings for him ebbed and flowed over the years (like any relationship), at the end we all realized how much we loved him and it was difficult for all of us to say goodbye yesterday.
Now it is time for us to get back to living our lives, tending to our families and enjoying the hell out of the time we have left on this side of whatever comes next.
I know will always remember and love you.
Goodbye Dad…some of the hardest words I have ever said.