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Day 15: The person you miss the most

Dear Pop-pop,

So much has happened in the last three years since you’ve been gone.  Most importantly, I graduated from college last year.  Were you watching?  It sure felt like you were.  I thought of you the whole time and wished you could have been there.

I haven’t found a job yet, but I know you’d still be proud of me.  That’s one thing I hope I never forget about you is how much pride you had in all of us kids, even if you didn’t show it outwardly.  I smile when I think of you listening to my “Let There Be Peace on Earth” solo, and now cherish that as one of my most precious memories.  I think of it as an anthem to you now.  We didn’t know it then, but it was.

I am in love, Pop-pop.  And I wish you could meet Chris.  I am certain that you two would get along – he loves Penn State just like you!  I can imagine that if you were still around, you two would spend time getting to know each other talking about all things football.  He’s the one, Pop-pop.  And I’d do anything to have you there on our wedding day.  So I certainly hope you will be watching from above.

I just…miss you.  More than I can put into words, more than I can pen on paper.  Not a day goes by when I don’t think about you.  And sometimes, out of nowhere, I smell your aftershave wafting through the air.  And maybe it’s silly, but when I do smell it, I tell myself it’s because you’re there looking in on me, if only for a minute.  It’s a comfort to me.

If I could do it all over again, I would have visited you a lot more.  I feel as though I took you for granted, pretending as though you’d always be here, blind to the fact that that wasn’t the case.  If I could do it all over again, I would have called you the day before you had your heart attack to ask you what you thought was wrong with my car.  I could have heard your voice one last time and heard you tell me you loved me.  I just wish you didn’t have to go so suddenly.  What I wouldn’t give for one last hug, one last smile, to hear your laughter one more time.

When I miss you the most, I think of singing “Let There Be Peace on Earth” – that will always be our special bond.  It warms my heart to know how proud you were of me in that moment, and always.

I love you forever.  I miss you so very much.

Sending you all of my love,
Rachael Hannah