My Mom’s retirement party was awesome. So many friends from her years as a teacher and so many friends from her most current role with the Flower Mound Police Department. She was very lucky to have two amazing careers. We were lucky to watch her navigate finishing college with 3 small kids and starting a career while taking care of a family. We surprised the crap out of her. It was so cool. She thought I’d flown back to Denver. The look on her face was great. Worth all the scheming.
Two of my Dad’s friends came as well. My Dad worked at UPS for a LOOOOONG time. And made many friends there. And his two close friends that came to the party have both retired from UPS. I grew up knowing all of these people. Cheer Moms, teachers, truck drivers, friends, family, they were all so kind to come. And as I looked around the party my eyes landed on my Dad’s two friends. Just like at my Nanny’s funeral recently when I looked at my Uncle Louie and cried…I became emotional. Someone was missing.
He worked so long and so hard and saved so much money for his retirement. Mom too. They had big plans. To travel and go and spend our inheritance. It truly is not fair. That he doesn’t get to retire. To enjoy the years of rest and travel and grandkids and beer drinking in the driveway. And its not fair that we don’t get that either. That his kids and wife don’t get that time with him. He took care of us for so very long. Devoted hours to a job to provide Guess jeans and cheer uniforms and soccer fees. And watching my Mom give a speech alone was emotional.
Im so happy for her. And where she is in her life. But it will never be ok. And thats something to sit with. All of the milestones that pass make you realize that life is just not fair sometimes. And thats true for everyone. But in that very selfish, self-absorbed moment at my Mom’s retirement party I was just sad. Me. Sad for me. Sad for Mom. And I missed him even more. I know he raised a beer to celebrate her. I know, logically, its death. And thats a part of life That we all deal with. But at that moment all logic flew out the window. And I allowed the sadness. And the “I miss you’s” to come.
I hope that where he is he gets a big fat retirement party. And beer. In kegs. And music. And a celebration. Im gonna go climb a mountain now. He’d want that. He’d climb them with me if he was here. Dont wait for retirement to relax, travel, drink a beer, sleep late, climb a mountain. Do it NOW. NOW is all you are ever promised.