Friday, June 22, 2012

Racing for release

It's now 5 days since my Dad passed away on Fathers' Day, all of which have been filled with an overwhelming mixture of grief at his loss, fond memories of times we shared, and gratitude for the outpouring of sympathy and support from friends and family all over the world. The sheer volume of messages we have received - both from those who knew him directly and even those with whom he simply had a friendly word or chat through an online forum - are a testament to what a good, kind and remarkable man he truly was.

The smile that will be missed by so many.
Love you always, Dad.

In the midst of all of this, we've managed to finally finish up the saga that was our leaking roof. The bedroom ceiling was completed and painted on Tuesday so we were able to vacuum and steam clean the carpet that evening prior to the new bedroom furniture being delivered on Wednesday evening. We got everything assembled and at last, after 15 nights on the futon in the spare bedroom, had our first night's sleep in a real bed.

Very pleased with how it turned out.

Miss the wave action of the waterbed, but our mattress is wonderful.

We only got about 4.5 hours in it on Wednesday night, though - with all that had been going on and with the weather having turned incredibly hot and humid, Tanker and I hopped on our motorcycles after getting everything built. The breeze and an iced mocha latte were just the relief we needed from the 40c/104f humidex and the turmoil in our minds..

Maybe Dad even came along with me for the ride..

Thursday night didn't bring much more in the way of sleep, as we had to pack everything we'd need for this weekend - we'll be leaving straight from work today for Niagara, as I'm racing the Welland Triathlon tomorrow morning. We're lucky enough to have wonderful friends in the area who have offered to let us pitch our tent in their backyard so we can be just 10mins away from the race venue, so tonight will be a small pre-race campfire with friendly faces.

With the havoc that has taken hold of my life in the last 2 weeks, training has been bumped far down the priority list. I have managed some fairly consistent short workouts, but just enough to prevent losing any fitness and to provide some stress relief. Sleep is a near-forgotten concept. I have no doubts the race will be a bit tougher as a result, but it's something I need to do. I can channel all of the swirling emotions in my head into fuel to drive me forward, and I can live completely in the moment on the course. Performance isn't important; doing my absolute best in memory my father is. He'd never ask for anything more than that.

This one's for you, Dad.

Sunday we'll be volunteering on the Welland Half Iron run course, then heading home via a gathering of some of our closest friends at which we plan to toast Da with the enormous bottle of Captain Morgan dark rum he left behind. Half of his roots being Irish, he deserves a wake among those who knew the quality of his character and what he meant to me. Monday will bring the visitation and Tuesday the memorial service, but this weekend will be devoted to a celebration of the life my father helped me build, for which I will be forever grateful.

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