This is a rather personal post, something I’ve not really posted before here, but I think you’ll understand why.
My hero, my protector, my shoulder to cry on, my cheerleader and biggest fan.
All of that and more. He taught me to laugh more, to be kind instead of quick with my judgement, to be compassionate to strangers and loved ones alike, and that family meant more than blood.
My dad passed away on Sunday February 8, 2015 after fighting stage IV/V lung cancer.
My dad, John St.Laurent, was truly a blessing for me, my mom, and my brother. He met my mom at their workplace and after a while “convinced” her to go out with him.
He quickly transformed from the “silly man at mom’s work” for me to a very prominent person in my life as mom’s boyfriend.
Their first date that I was aware of, I tried to wait for them to come back and fell asleep waiting. I wanted to protect my mom, but I didn’t have to anymore, he would.
When they dated and got then got engaged, I started to understand what it was like to have a dad. It meant tickle machines, big hugs that turned into being swooped up and tossed in the air. It meant seeing my mom really smile. It meant giant everything! Giant easter baskets filled to the brim with a giant easter bunny, giant birthday cards, giant chocolate bars, gigantic love.
When they got married, my dad made sure that I didn’t feel like I was losing a mom, but gave me my first really fancy ring and said that he was marrying all of us, and loved us so much.
That day was filled with wedding ‘oops’ – like my brother passing out, but that’s another story – but it’s day that is seared into my mind forever. We were finally a family. I finally had a Dad.
Having a Dad meant everything good and bad about that. It wasn’t always daddy daughter dances, it was also not being allowed to date, not being allowed to dress a certain way, being told he didn’t care how old I was, that he’d spank me anyways.
And I treasure those moments as much as I do the ones where he stood up clapping and said “THATS MY BABY GIRL” after the first solo when I didn’t sing like ‘minnie mouse’, when he gave me my first boom box and cd, when he let me cry on his favorite shirt, when he drove me all over creation for practices and friends, and the day he exclaimed with joy after seeing me in my wedding dress for the first time.
My dad was infectious, laughing and being silly and carefree even when he was working a 10 hour day and tired.
A big part of me feels missing, my heart has cracked, but I will not dwell in sadness, for that is not the legacy he would want.
He would want me to laugh even though there’s a lump in my throat, to sing even though the words make my heart ache.
I miss you and love you daddy, thank you for everything you taught me and for the gift it is to be your daughter.
As that song I sang says, “May the time not be too distant. When we meet by the river shore. ‘Til then dream of that wonderful day”.
My dad was more than just this post, he was a veteran, a man of faith, laughter, and love.
If you want to see his obituary, here is the link. http://www.laughlinfuneralhome.com/notices/John-StLaurent