With Father’s Day a week from today, I can’t help but think of my Dad. Yes, that tiny little girl in the picture below is yours truly. This is one of my favorite pictures of me and my dad. Life was simple and I adored my dad to my core.. There was no one greater, no one wiser, no one more fun to be around than my dad.
One of the best memories I have of my dad was the moment I caught my very first fish. . I actually remember that day perfectly. We were at a Christian Camp where one of my sisters worked, and we would frequent the establishment and have outdoorsy adventures as a family. We rented these little fishing boats and set off into the lake to fish. My dad and I were in one boat, sisters in another. I felt the tug of the line and started reeling that sucker in.. It was so much fun, and it was more special because my dad was right beside me cheering me on..
My childhood consisted of a lot of fishing, camping, being outdoors, and being active. That was what dad liked, so that’s what we did, haha. And it forever instilled in me a love for being outdoors.
I cannot complain one bit about my childhood. Sure being homeschooled wasn’t my favorite thing in the world, but in all honesty, I got to spend my whole childhood with my dad and sisters at home. And looking back on that now, I see what a huge blessing it was to have that time with him, especially since he passed so young.
Father’s Day is such a weird day for me. I wish I could say that since I’m married with kids now, Father’s Day is easier, since I can focus on my husband and kids. But it is still painful. Still hard. Even after 10 years. My dad is not here anymore due to cancer taking him away 10 years ago, and Father’s Day can be one of those days where I just want to curl up into a ball and cry.
I haven’t celebrated Father’s Day for over 10 years. It is a rough time.. Walking through the aisles and seeing “Rad Dad”, “Show Dad how much he means to you”, “Celebrate Dad”. I just die a little inside. The pain of losing a parent is never easy. And having to go through it when you are still quite young is even harder.
My kids never got to meet their grandpa. My husband never got to meet his father-in-law, and I have to tell you, it sucks. He was such a genuine, funny guy. He loved God and never hesitated to talk about that love for God or spread the message of how Jesus changed his life. He was only 44 when he passed. And if you ask me, that’s way to freaking young. He could have changed so many lives and helped so many more people. But God had other plans and I have to believe that God has perfect timing. I miss my dad tremendously, but I also believe in a God who doesn’t make mistakes.
He would have been the best Grandpa to my kids. I can just see him coming over every weekend to babysit or just to simply visit. He never would have hesitated to spend time with my kids. He would have loved being a Grandpa. My dad was fortunate enough to meet 2 of his grandkids before he passed. He now has 13 grandkids. 11 of whom missed out on meeting their extraordinary Grandpa.
I adore this picture. While the five of us girls were shopping at the mall, he had his Bible out and was studying it. THIS is the kind of guy he was. The man was not afraid of what people thought of him or his beliefs. If you had a conversation with him, you better believe God came up in that talk.
My dad was my moral compass. I almost felt like the only person I had who always motivated me to be more Christ-like, well he was now gone. I felt very empty and alone when he passed. Like a huge chunk of me just died with him.
He was there to reprimand, in the most loving way of course, and he didn’t put too much thought into if it hurt your feelings or not. Don’t get me wrong, he cared. To me, that is actually the epitome of caring. He cared about your relationship with God. He cared if you strayed. If you asked for his advice, he would tell you straight up what he thought. And I admire that so much in him. Even sometimes when he wasn’t asked for his opinions, he’d tell you anyways. And I think we need a lot more of that in today’s world.
I feel like too many Christians are afraid to offend people. Afraid that they’ll hurt someones feelings. What they should be worried about is how that person could be straying so far from God that they might be headed into some seriously painful consequences. They’re just too chicken to stand up and say something. I need to write a whole post on this topic right here, but that is for another time..
I remember him telling me when I would be upset about something, “You need to go to your room where it’s quiet and just talk to God. You will know what’s right and what’s wrong if you just go talk to Him.” And every single time I would come back, ready to talk, and feeling completely different about the situation. Or he would say, “What would God want you to do? You know the answer.” And he was right. I always did. The thing I loved is that he would let me figure things out on my own, he just guided me and kind of gave me that push I needed. It was never, “do this, do that.”
I wish I still had that friend that reminded me often of what the Bible says. Everyone needs that person in their life. Everyone needs that one true friend that will always lead you back to God if you go astray.
He was such a people person, I am such an introvert. If he saw someone in need, he would help. He would pull over if he saw a broken down car. He would give that person on the side of the road food if he saw they were hungry. That was just the kind of person he was.
Cancer just was not part of the plan. It never is. And it can take that person away from you before you even have a chance to realize what’s going on. Watching your parent deteriorate in front of you is something I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy. It was the most heartbreaking thing to see my dad in so much pain and agony for two years while he fought with and battled the disgusting disease known as cancer.
I miss the hugs, he gave the BEST bear hugs. I miss the encouraging words, he always had a scripture on hand to share. I miss the DUMB jokes, but they always made me laugh out loud every single time. I miss the silliness of my dad, goofy faces and all. I miss everything about him. But I have memories. I have stories. And I hope I can somehow show my kids who my dad was. That’s really all I can do.
Psalm 34:18 The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.”
For those of us who have a rough time on Father’s Day or Mother’s Day, hang in there. It still hurts thinking about my dad. And it always will. One thing that helps me get through the day is having my husband there for me. He has always been so strong and so supportive on days like this. He always checks in on me and makes sure I’m okay. Even though it is supposed to be a day for HIM. I love him with all of my heart.
Find comfort in someone you love on Father’s Day and know that you are not alone. It is a rough day for a lot of us. I will be praying that everyone who is without a father will seek comfort in the heavenly Father up above who is there waiting with open arms to give you a big bear hug.
Love you guys.