There is no place to begin with something like this; my dad is gone, and far sooner than I expected. The last month has been something of a blur. He had been noticeably sick since early winter, and as the months progressed so did the cancer. Throughout this past semester, I would come over a few times a week to print something off for school or just say “hi”. I’m so thankful that I did that; doing that gave me more moments with my dad. Then the last month happened and it felt like home was becoming a hospital room rather than my parents’ house or my apartment. Family and friends stepped in to take care of us when it was clear that we were facing something truly horrendous.
The sorrow I have felt in these past few months truly is potentially soul-crushing, but the love and support I have felt has kept me afloat and reminded me of the importance of the body of Christ. I have felt the Holy Spirit sustaining me through scripture and the children of God. This week the passage in Philippians that says “the peace which passes all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus” has new meaning to me. I have a peace that I don’t understand, and it is quite clearly guarding my heart and mind. This peace, love, and support can only be the result of a beautiful and glorious Heavenly Father.
Now my earthly father has gone to be with my Heavenly Father, but my Heavenly Father is still with me and my earthly father lives on in the traits that he gave my sister and I. Be sad for me if you must, but know that above all else I am thankful for the moments I was given with my dad. Some don’t get their dad as long as I had mine or they don’t get to have years and memories that sweet.
This next part is something I wrote for my dad and read to him about a week and a half ago when he was still in the ICU.
To the man who raised me. To the man who played board games with me during the summer. To the man who calmed me when I was in the midst of anxiety attacks at 2 AM. To the man who pulled a thorn out of my foot one Father’s day when I was a teen. To the man who is my biggest cheerleader when it comes to me wanting to do ministry. I love you. I am thankful for our moments. Thank you for giving me your twisted sense of humor and love for deep conversations. You’re a beautiful person.
If your parent is still alive treasure them. You don’t know when you’re going to have to look at the person you once viewed as one of the strongest people in the world in a casket. If you’re traveling and a couple of hours away from someone you care about; try your best to take the few out of the way hours to spend time with someone you care about and rarely get to see. Embrace your loved ones with the fullest joy you possibly can, and thank God for all the beautiful moments you are given with people who are dear to you.