Tag Archives: father

39

I turned 39 on June 2nd. It was a big deal for me.

My family, at the end of my 39th birthday weekend.

I’ve long dreaded turning 39. I think I was telling myself I was dreading turning 40, but that was a lie. I’m not afraid of 40 – I’m excited for it, actually. It’s a badge I’m anxious to earn. But I’ve been scared shitless of 39.

My father died when he was 39, you see. He did not have what most people would consider a “good death”. He was a young man with a wife and two small children – barely in his thirties – when he was given a devastating diagnosis. He and his mother were both diagnosed at nearly the exact same time, with the exact same cancer; they were each given just months to live. In hindsight, it’s very clear that both of their deaths could have been easily avoided by not subjecting them to radioactive, carcinogenic procedures to treat their (hereditary) thyroid conditions. But in the early 80s oncology was a fledgling field, ya know…

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20

My dad died 20 years ago today. July 1, 1993.

He had been at home on hospice care for a month or so by then. It was around 5:00 AM when my mom woke me to tell me there was an ambulance outside, waiting to take him back to the hospital. I got up only to give her the lucky stuffed parrot I always made sure was in his hospital room with him. Then I went back to sleep; I had pom pon practice at 7:00 AM up at school, and after that, driver’s ed class just down the hall.

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60

Today is my grandparents’ 60th wedding anniversary celebration.

My grandparents are pretty much the coolest grandparents on the planet. Sorry if you thought yours were!

We’re home in Detroit for their big soiree, taking a break from all the house hoopla, and tonight we’re bringing together 200 of our closest family and friends for booze, champagne, big band music, and manly Italian tears in their honor.

I’ll have more photos and stories to share once we get back, but in the meantime, here’s what 60 years of true love looks like, in 60 photos, chosen by me for the happy couple.

It’s the very essence of what it means to — as I said in my wedding vows — love a man like Lucy loves Sam.

Enjoy.

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