I Just Want My Dad Back! a Daughters Story From a Parent of Suicide....
On a warm winter day almost three years ago, I went to see my dad at work. Something just didn’t feel right to me. He had a rough weekend with his mental state and I wanted to make sure that he was okay. I called his cell phone that morning before I left from my house. It was over an hour drive from our house to where he worked. I loaded my girls in the car and we were off. I am also a online reseller and I had had made plans to make several stops throughout the day, and planned the stops accordingly. When I got to his work, I noticed that his truck wasn’t there. I thought maybe he had parked somewhere else in the parking lot. I couldn’t find him so my first thought was to call my mom who was also at work. She said he had left that morning for work and should be there, but said he might have had an appointment that he forgot to tell her about.
I took off again and had stopped at a couple of thrift stores on my way to the doctors office. I figured I’d stop there first to see if he indeed had an appointment. It’s a very small office in a rural country setting. It took less than 30 seconds to drive through the parking lot. I didn’t see his truck but I figured we may have just missed each other. I took off again and figured since I was going to stop at a thrift store in their town I’d stop by the house just in case he had stopped there. I stopped on the way and had dropped my stuff off at the consignment shop. I told them I’d be back in less than hour and not to rush to look through my things. I loaded the kids up again in the car and figured I’d swing by the house, and then come back and pick up my stuff. As I got to their development I had a bad feeling. I saw his truck outback of their house and decided to run inside quickly. I told my girls to hang tight so I could run in to see if he was there.
Upon entering my parents house I noticed an odd smell. Nothing potent but just a smell I hadn’t smelled before. I immediately began calling out for him which I always did when I got to their house. I checked the downstairs, and then started up the stairs. Everything was in place as per usual. I could smell the hairspray that my mom had used that morning to do her hair, and the smell of soap. Or finding him I decided to go down to the basement and check there because they have a laundry room that has a door and sometimes you can’t hear anything even if you yell. As I went down the stairs I looked down through the opening and saw his feet. I immediately yelled to him that I was there. He always startled a little more as he got older and since he got his hearing aids I didn’t want to completely scare him. He didn’t answer. Nor would he. As I went down the stairs and looked at him I immediately noticed something was wrong. I went over to him very cautiously and noticed the blood pool and blood. I looked down and saw the gun. I just stood there frozen. I couldn’t move. I remember going over to him and holding his hand and giving his Santa belly a hug. It took me a few seconds to realize where I was again, and then I remembered my girls were in the car.
I ran outside to my van where my girls had been patiently waiting. I immediately grabbed my phone and called 911. I don’t remember the phone call, but I do remember feeling like I was going to faint. When the police had shown up I told the officer what I found and he told me to stay outside so he could investigate. By then the ambulance had shown up and the coroner. As I stood outside the door of my childhood home, I remember the EMT looking at me and saying, “Were very sorry for your loss.” It was at that moment it hit me that I would never see my daddy again. As I stood there in a haze I remember my girls being eerily quiet and well behaved. I was in and out of it and remember thinking, “I need to call my mom!” I called her and remember hearing her scream in the phone. Yelling, “WHAT? Stop lying!” I couldn’t take someone yelling at me and I hung up my phone. She immediately called me back and asked what I found. She told me she was on her way and she would be there as soon as she could. I also called my fiancée and he was in complete shock. The only thing I remember was saying, “Please come now!” As I waited for everyone to come I remember looking at my girls and thinking, “Why us? Why my Dad?” I remember looking back at the house and seeing the house where I grew up looking like something out of a horror movie. Police going in and out, a coroner, funeral director, and then a hearse. It was a scene I will never forget. My mom showed up and her office mate had driven her there thank goodness. I remember the look on my girls faces that “Mimi” wasn’t coming over the car to give hugs and kisses. The look of pure devastation on my daughters face seeing her mommy and Mimi both crying. This was the beginning of a what was going to be a very long week of setting up appointments, making funeral arrangements, and making other arrangements. The difference was we wouldn’t be setting up a funeral with a viewing. We would be setting up a memorial in which no one would be able to say their final goodbyes. This was going to be the beginning of a totally different life without the rock of our family.