According to the title of my blog post you may think that I’m about to tell you what happened the night I had sex for the first time, but I won’t. That night wasn’t the night I became an adult. I was probably older than the average but still not an adult. I am about to write down what happend and how I felt when my father suddenly died overnight.
I was 22 years old and I was enjoying the life I had at that age like partying with my friends, dating random guys, nothing very relevant, but I liked it, I was happy. It was the summer of 2006, a FIFA World Cup Summer. Why was it relevant to tell you that it was World Cup season? Well because the last time I saw my father was after Italy won 2-0 against Germany and got the ticket to the Cup Final. Since my father was Italian, he wanted them to win of course even if he never liked to admit it because football wasn’t important to him and he despised aggressive football fanatics. After the match we enjoyed the rest of the summer night in the front yard to watch all the crazy people in their car honking parade. We made fun of them and of the people of our neighborhood. When you live in Esch-sur-Alzette there is a lot to make fun of. My father never ran out of good wordplays and he always had snappy comments ready and made us all laugh very hard. I liked that. I miss it so much. At least I could learn from the best! I remember sitting on his lap and hugging him. At that moment I didn’t realize it would be the last hug I gave him and the last time I saw him. It wasn’t a special moment because we did that every day, laughing and hugging, I was a daddy’s girl, we were very close. Now I wish I could have enjoyed that hug more. Two nights after this, I was sitting on the same spot in our front yard, but this time surrounded by the blue lights of the ambulance.
When I got THE call I was driving home from a date at the movies, I was just around the block. It was a good date, I liked the boy because he was so handsome, I think he was the most handsome date I ever had. National team player, I can’t believe I was into such guys at that time and he was an asshole besides that! Infatuated, I answered my ringing phone. “Home” was calling me and I thought it was my mother who wanted to ask me at what time I would be at home. But My sister was on the phone, my sister who didn’t live there anymore and I knew that there was something wrong. She asked me to come home as soon as possible and I asked her if someone died. She said yes. And I said, “it’s dad” and she said yes again. I Remember feeling nothing for a couple of seconds. I just had to turn to the left to enter our street. I stopped the car in the middle of the street and I saw my mother sitting on that spot, where we were so happy just two nights before. She looked crazy, I cannot explain crazy in which way. But she really looked insane. I stepped out of my car I couldn’t park it, my neighbour did that for me and all I could do was shout out loud, one single shout, but I think that shout froze the whole neighbourhood’s veins and then I fainted. My sister’s husband helped me to get back on my feet and at that moment I told myself that this was the only weak moment I was allowed to have and that I had to be strong. And so I did. That was the moment I became an adult.
I didn’t want or need to see his dead body. I understood very quickly that I would never see him again. He died in his bed and when I really miss him, I drive to my mother’s house and just lay in his bed for a while. I don’t believe in ghosts, angels or whatever but I know that I feel good when I do that.
Angelo was 50 when he died of a heart attack and the doctors couldn’t do anything for him. He wasn’t sick, had no disease but he was a hard worker with a stressful job and the heavy smoking wasn’t certainly helpful.
I remember doing the paperwork, a lot of paperwork, running from one administration to another with my mother who was in shock and my sister who was crying a lot. We had to fill out so many forms and it made no sense to us. At the Ministry of Justice a woman was so rude to my sister that she made her cry, she was so cold-hearted and told her to stop whining because it wouldn’t make it faster to get the right papers. How can a person be so heartless? I had to leave the room because I would have slapped her if I stayed. I remember my mother answering back that it really doesn’t help being stupid and rude if you’re already ugly as fuck. Don’t upset three latin women! Then I stole a plant decoration and we left. I usually don’t steal but I had to and it made my mother and sister laugh for the first time.
That was almost 11 years ago and we all learned to live again. I’m glad my mother didn’t die of love sickness as Isolde did in Richard Wagner’s drama. My grandmother was very strong, she did the traditional black mourning for one year and then she seemed to have accepted the death of her son. I never talk with my sister how she feels but I think she’s ok.
And for me, I don’t know if this is the last time I write about it, there is so much more to tell. But I’m happy I could at least write down these words. It wasn’t easy. I mean I still miss him so much every day. I still cry at night sometimes or dream about him. I’d love to know what he would think of me, of my life, my husband, my dogs. So many life changing things happened during the last 11 years that I would have loved to share with him. Ask him for advice. Would he like me now? Would he approve my house choice and my job? I can only imagine it but I will never know for sure. I guess I will never stop thinking of him, thinking what would have happend if he was still here. Time doesn’t heal wounds at all. But we’re all creatures of habit and I got used to miss him. My friend, my hero, my mentor, my role model, my dad.
Here’s a song that helps me a lot when I’m sad and thinking of him. Lenny Kravitz wrote it some years after he lost his mother.