I looked down at my phone the other day to call my mom and glanced at my recent calls and thought to myself, I should call my dad

And then I realized . . . I can’t. 

Ever. 

Again. 

Call my dad. 

Never before has six months of my life gone by so fast and so slow all at the same time. 

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I wanted to go back to that little, tiny millisecond and stay there. Just stay there. Freeze. Stay where I literally thought it was possible to call my dad. Stay where it didn’t feel like life had changed, and I could literally tell him everything. Stay in the tiny piece of time when he had never left.

Stay where it felt like it was real.

Stay in that safe, little moment when it didn’t feel like I had lost him, and if I scrolled to his name in my phone, he would answer with, “Hey, Hoot.” But that millisecond went by too fast, and I couldn’t stay there.

I had to leave.

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I had to go back to the reality that I couldn’t just call him up and talk to him. I had to go back to my new life of learning to live without him. There are always two parts. Before and after. I’m still trying to grasp what it’s like to live after he’s gone even though my mind is still locked onto my life before he left. 

I can tell you this, it was the safest feeling I’ve felt in a long time.

And I’m thankful for that. I’m thankful for that moment I felt him. I’m thankful that during just one blink, life felt as if it should be. Even if it completely shook me up and made me forget where I was going or what I was doing once I realized the reality. He was reminding me he is still here. Even if I can’t physically see him or hear him, I can feel him and sometimes that’s enough.

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It has to be enough. Because it’s all you have. It’s all you have to hold onto. So hold onto it and don’t let it go. 

Now, go call your mom and/or your dad. For those of us who can’t

Previously published on the author’s Facebook page

Hannah Fellows

I live in Colorado Springs, Colorado and teach 1st grade. I have an 8-year-old son and a chocolate lab named Mocha. I love to spend time outside and go back to Kansas and spend time on the family farm.