Thursday, December 17, 2009

My parents-in-law on their 55th anniversary

My father-in-law passed away this morning. It was not unexpected, but it's still a shock. I'm glad his suffering is over, but I will miss him and his hearty laugh for a long time.

I know I'm just a daughter-in-law and not a blood relative, but I feel like he was my second father, especially after my own father died. I started dating Robert at age 16 - almost 30 years ago - so I've been around my husband's family for that long, and when you're that age, you can't help but see your boyfriend's parents as parents. You look up to them. It's part of nature. And when I married into the family, that just cemented the relationship.

I have such fond memories of him. One of the earliest times was of going to Robert's house to have home-made (by Dr. Gaimari) pizza. Robert had bragged about his father's pizza-making abilities and he didn't lie. Another early time in our relationship, Dr. Gaimari and Robert picked me up at my house to go to the lake for the weekend. We stopped at the Mall for pizza at Papa Gino's, which we ate on the way up. While ordering, Dr. Gaimari advised me to always get the soda without ice because that way, you get more. I will never have a Christmas that I don't think of him. He loved to buy presents for his girls, of which I was one. He'd find some cool kitchen gadget and buy 4 and be tickled at how much we all liked them. He had a twinkle in his eye and a keen sense of humor. He loved to joke and flirt. He also loved to get me going. He knew my buttons and he loved to push them to watch me go. But it was done with love.

A shining light has gone out but the stars in heaven burn a little brighter now. Rest in Peace.

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