Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Life and Legacy

Lovelies, are you still out there?

I've thought about blogging many times over the last few months but I just couldn't. There was so much to say that I couldn't say anything. So much to think about that my mind was blank. So much to feel that I was numb.

On October 23 we learned that there were no more treatment options available for my Dad in his fight against lymphoma and on November 23 he passed away. During those short 30 days we spent as much time as possible as a family. We celebrated an early Christmas, had waffle brunches, played crib, joked and cried. We made the most of our time together and it was so not enough.

Since his death we have all been moving through life, lop-sided and fragile. We have lived and breathed, laughed and cried, celebrated and mourned but all in a kind of daze. Grief is like a weighted, too-small blanket. You struggle against it, try to stretch it to cover you, hide you from the world but in the end you are left lugging it around. It only covers parts of you, the most fragile and broken bits. The rest of you is left raw and exposed. You try to act 'normal', you try to live as you once did but nothing feels right. Nothing is right. It is wrong to love someone so much and miss them so much.

It's just wrong.

Yet there is life. And legacy.

Dad was a funny, strong, loving, protective, gentle soul. His heart was full. He was wholly devoted to and madly in love with my mom. He loved, instructed and debated with us girls with intention and affection. He beamed with pride at the mention of his grandchildren. He was a faithful friend, a loving brother and a doting uncle. He loved in gallons.

This is his legacy.

He taught us how to love, how to be family. He showed us what friendship, forgiveness, dedication and affection looked like in action. He was an example of integrity and intelligence. He lived his beliefs everyday - all day. He was proud of our country, our heritage and looked forward to our future. He was intentional in how he raised us and in how he related to each of his grandchildren. He had dreams for each one of us and he spoke them, prayed them daily. His faith wasn't a Sunday morning thing. It was a moment by moment relationship with His Creator. Family first. Heart family or blood family, either way, family is family and nothing is more important.

Dad is deeply missed with every second of every day. we wear our grief but we are also his legacy. We are walking, talking proof of the strength of his life. We are all he dreamed of in life, all that really mattered to him. So we live on. We live - well. Just as he taught us.

Just as he did.

We are his legacy.