My eye caught a glance of your salmon colored blazer. Your pocket square still neatly popping out. They say “real men wear pink,” and you Daddy, were on another level. You wore salmon and you wore it with class, finesse, and a distinct flair.
I keep seeing you everywhere. Your home of course. The office. (Throwing away your Hall’s cough drop wrappers that you of course didn’t properly put in the trash bin now seems like Sophie’s choice for me. Do I keep it? Ok, Dorothy stop being weird.) Dad, if it was not for mother, I believe you would have been a hoarder.
It has been one month since you departed this earth. Thirty days since it feels like my entire life was ripped open, and I have endured more chaos and pain than I ever thought possible. The grief is at times overwhelming. It but can only give me a glimpse into your own pain during your last days, dear Dad.
"They say" you will have good days and bad days. I am still at good hours and bad hours. The good hours I smile and laugh at how truly wonderful you were. A whimsical dad, really! I think if Santa Claus and the Tooth Fairy were dads, they would be you. I am super jealous and in awe that you have crossed over into Glory. Oh my goodness, your sufferings, pain, and burdens are gone! Oh sweet Dad, how wonderful it must have been as you walked info our Savior’s arms! "He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. All these things are gone forever.” (Revelation 21:4 NLT)
The bad hours. Oh, I have had some of my best tantrums. Fits of anger, tears, and rage that put my teenage years to shame. In the darkest hours I just want to pull the covers over my head in the bed and not come out. Or just devise an escape route. Penny Lane went to Morocco. Maybe I could do the same.
But as sure as those despairing almost hopeless moments come upon me and all I want to do is run away, I catch a glance of you. The salmon blazer maybe, or your writings of our hope in the Lord. The inevitable sufferings of this world are not to be escaped or even to define us. They are to teach us, refine us, and grow us. We must walk through them, step by step. Right foot. Left foot. Not alone of course. Together, with God, and His diverse community of people all around me. I am not alone. We are not alone, friends. May we open our eyes and ears and take in what and who God has given us on this Earth. I am so grateful.
Dad, your tragic departure from this earth was not in vain. May it, dear Lord, help me, refine me, and strengthen me. May it do the same for so many others who you knew, loved, and impacted. I rejoice. We rejoice.
"Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us." Romans 5:3-5 (ESV)