on this night two years ago...

on this night, two years ago, I remember being afraid to go to sleep, for fear that when I woke I would receive news that my dad had passed in the night. I didn't know the heartbreak I'd experience the following day... 

No, I hadn't missed his last moments while sleeping, an act that felt so selfish in the midst of it all. Instead, God allowed me to be by his side when he took his final breaths... & I, along with the members of my family wept beside him as his spirit left him. 

I was and am forever changed. Changed in ways I didn't expect, changed in ways I wish I weren't, and though few, changed in ways I'm thankful for. 

"Missing" my dad is an understatement. I am still, two years later, utterly heartbroken over him. It doesn't make sense and it doesn't seem fair, and I'm still mad about it. 

What I AM thankful for is my family that is still here with me, my sweet kiddos that light my world every day, my loving loving husband who can hug away my hurt & who's shoulder can soak up my ugly crying tears, and for a God who loves me through my anger & brokenness. I somehow still, even after what felt like betrayal, when my deepest prayer was not answered, have faith in Him and His unconditional love for me. I pray anyway, I believe He will answer prayers and protect my family and be with us always, I love Him. 

So no, I don't have my dad, my earthly father, the one who helped raise me and took care of me when I was sick, the funny one, who's voice and walk and hands and hugs and silly faces I'll never EVER forget. my dad, who's wisdom was captivating and who's heart was full for his family. He is gone, a memory now. He is with angels, praising my heavenly father, who like my dad (but even more so) loves me endlessly, comforts me, and cares for me always and unconditionally. He will never leave me, and I'm thankful for that.

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