July 11 is a strange day for me. My Dad passed away on July 11th, 1999. I can recall vividly, most of the details of that day. The trip that I took to Detroit, and the phone call home at 10:11 that morning. I had a gut feeling that today was the day, and I called home to check on my Dad. He was eating KFC with my brother, and was more alert than he had been in days. My (step) mom assured me that he was fine, I had no reason to worry and that I should have a great time away with my friend an Geoff.
When we got home later that day, I had an incredible urge to see my Dad. It was nothing that I could explain, other than I just needed to see him. Geoff refused to either take me in the car, or watch the girls, and he went fishing, not even leaving me with bus fare. I cried for the remainder of the day. I knew that I had to get to my Dad.
I never did. He passed away that same night - at 10:11 pm.
I can recall much more, but I don't want to rehash it all. No need, really, because July 11 th is about more than just my Dad.
July 11th 1997, my sister, in Colorado, that I hadn't yet met, lost her Mom. On that day in 1999, while I was mourning my Dad, my sister, Lucky, was missing her Mom.
I found my sister in February, 2002. We connected immediately. She was everything that I knew she would be, and more. We made plans to meet that summer. Lucky called her travel agent, and a flight was booked.
I met my sister on July 11, 2002. Kayla and I waited anxiously for the sliding doors at the airport arrivals to open. My hands shook and my heart was racing wildly. When the doors finally opened to reveal my sister, my heart was beating like a drum. It was one of the defining moments of my life.
Before my Dad died, we had the opportunity to talk - to heal old wounds, to make amends, and to make promises. I promised to live my life the same way that I would if he were still here. To make him proud. I promised to do my best to reconcile with Betty, and to take care of his grand daughters (the light of his life).
He promised to watch over me, to let me know, somehow, someway, that he was ok. He also promised to send me my sister. He kept his word.
I have always wondered if it was a fluke that I met my sister on July 11th, or if there was a higher power, and two loving parents responsible.
Either way, today, I will be thinking of John, Joan, and Lucky.