I’ll never forget the day I was in the hospital when my pap was dying.

I said, “I love you, pap.”

He couldn’t speak. He had a trach in his throat.

He squeezed my hand three times.

Although he couldn’t say I love you, I felt the three squeezes and knew what they meant. I knew exactly what they meant.

That day and those three squeezes will stick with me forever.

Thank you, pap. We didn’t have the same blood, but you would have never known it. You were a great person, were always there for me, and taught me so much.