• Eleni Mak

A Letter to My Dad in Heaven

Updated: Jul 3, 2020

It’s been 2 years and 3 months since my father died. It’s crazy how quickly time passes us by. I reflect on my father’s life and on the lessons he taught me often; probably daily as a matter of fact.

It’s been 2 years and 3 months since my father died. It’s crazy how quickly time passes us by. I reflect on my father’s life and on the lessons he taught me often; probably daily as a matter of fact. I often think about things we talked about or things we argued about — because we argued often — and as I grow older I try to put his lessons into perspective if and when I can. I don’t cry as much anymore but it also doesn’t take much to make me cry when it comes to my dad. My father was a wise man. Wise beyond his years, beyond his formal education level and beyond what he knew or acknowledged himself. My dad was strong and smart, yet kind and gentle when he needed to be. We called him “The General” because he was the alpha male of alpha males but, anyone who knew him knew that when he was around... he got shit done and he had your back no matter what!

Just like any major occurrence in ones life, there are days where it feels like it was just yesterday that my dad was here and there are days where is seems like it’s been decades since he he’s been gone. Since my father died I have done more reflecting than I have ever done in my life. I have reflected on myself as a person, as a mother, as a woman, as a wife and of course, as a daughter. I have questioned my life, my morals, my values and my decisions and I have hit highs and lows I never considered possible. I guess that’s what happens to most people when they lose someone so dear to them in such a way. My dad died of a massive heart attack at my cousin’s wedding seconds after he had been dancing with my brother and I. I watched in complete disbelief as friends tried to revive him and instantly... my life changed. My dad was my world; he was my strength, my courage, my hope and my dreams. My dad believed in me even when he probably should not have and he loved me no matter what. My dad was the only true love I have ever known! So... on this day, the 70th anniversary of his birth I send him this message up above with all my love and all my heart. Today — October 2, 2015 — would have been by father’s 70th birthday. Although he is not here in physical form with us, he is most certainly here in every way that truly matters to me. He is here, in my heart and in my soul forever.


Happy birthday, most amazing man! Daddy, I don’t know where to begin. First, I want to thank you for being you. For being the greatest father I could have asked for. For being stubborn and for being strong and most importantly, for always putting our family first. I often think about my childhood and the memories are all too sweet. I remember a man who worked hard in a foreign country to provide everything he possibly could for my brother and I. I remember a man who never settled and was always looking to grow and do more. I often think about our summer vacations in Greece where you worked hard not just to show us a good time but to also teach history and life lessons. You gave new meaning to “teachable moments” because every second of every day was a teachable moment for you. You... with your little formal education worked hard to raise us to be proper human beings with morals, values and respect for society and people. You... with your little knowledge of the English language worked relentlessly to push us to believe in ourselves and be strong individuals that could stand alone. You... with no help from anyone built a life full of abundance, full of love and most importantly full of laughter.

As children we never knew of financial worries — even if you struggled — and never knew of hardship — even if you stayed up all night trying to make ends meet. Daddy... you taught me to be strong, to have courage and to have faith. Daddy... you taught me to love with all my heart and to always be truthful no matter what. You taught me to be passionate and fearless regardless of what others thought. On this day Daddy... I thank you. I thank you for being the most amazing man in my life and I thank you for always being by my side regardless of how much of a pain in the ass I was. You taught me what true love is and you taught me what it is to be a parent. I see you in the eyes of my children everyday and I am grateful for that every moment. I see your stubbornness in Anastasia and your sensitivity in Georgia. I see your lust for life in the mirror and your persistence in my brother. Your legacy lives on in your children and your grandchildren because you worked so hard to give us a head start in life. On this day... I honor you! I honor your faithfulness and your strength and I honor your love and commitment. On this day, I will light a candle and watch it burn and on this day I will sing happy birthday to the greatest man in my life.

Happy birthday, Daddy!

Love, Eleni xoxox

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© 2020 by Eleni Mak.