Friday, August 02, 2013

on the count of three: a photo essay of our day remembering daddy

this past weekend marked the one year anniversary of my daddy's passing
as you can imagine the thought of this day arriving lay heavy on my heart
the feelings of loss i had experienced over the year compounded into one single day
we decided as a family, on the recommendation of those who have also experienced great loss in their lives, to create traditions that we could do together to celebrate our love for him
husband, father, and grandpa

our day was full
full of tears
full of laughter
full of memories
full of longing
full of gratitude

details of the day one year ago have been burned in my mind forever
imagining as if i was there again
as i fought and sobbed not wanting to step out of that ICU door,
not wanting to leave my Daddy there
not knowing what to do, how to live by taking one step out of that door
how do i greet people
how do i go to the store
how do i tell my children

Mike took me by the hands and told me to look at his face
oh his sweet and tender face with power in strength and faith behind those gentle blue eyes
and he said, 'one step'

and then together arm in arm with my sisters and mom
took that one step
and then another and another
and that is how i have lived this year
one step at a time
day after day
month after month

this day was a day to share our love for my daddy
and remember what we cherished most about having him here with us
we started off with a saus-cake breakfast 
pancakes grandpa style
we then took time to write letters to grandpa that we would attach to white balloons
i loved the kids sweet messages
"i miss you so much that i wish i was with  you" tate
"i love and miss you so much! i just want to give you a big hug" owen
when we arrived at the cemetery someone had been there already and decorated his gravesite with flowers and lollipops
at the cemetery we passed out all the messaged attached balloons
and on the count of three
we let them go
up toward heaven
i was not prepared for the rush of emotion that would accompany letting that balloon go
sending my love and my heart up into that vast blue sky
watching it climb
wishing in my childhood desire that somehow that balloon would find my daddy
and he would read my words and feel my love
i am grateful for my knowledge of God's plan that will enable me to be in my daddy's embrace once again

i have put together a photo essay for you capturing the beauty of our day
to experience firsthand the love, the longing, and the triumph of hope

if you have a memory of my father you would like to share
we would love to hear it
thank you all so much for your outreach of support and care over this past year


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