Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Happy birthday Dad.

I woke up in a funk. As I stepped out of the shower, I realized the true culprit of my mood.  Not only is it that blasted heinous Tuesday, but today my daddy would have been 64.  No.  Today my daddy SHOULD have been 64.   After a rough start to the morning, I realized Bran had left his lunch at home as he rushed out the door with Charlee.  I called him to see if he was close enough to turn around.  He said he wasn't but that he was just dialing my number to tell me what Charlee had said.  "I love Mommy.  I love to hug her and I love to kiss her."  My heart felt pulled in 2 directions.  The innocent love of a child is something no one could ever duplicate nor prepare you for.  Those words pierced my heavy heart.  I had wished my dad could be around to know her, to love her, to invest in her the ways he invested in anyone wise enough to accept it.  But in that moment, I realized my dad is with her.  Her grace is beyond her years.  Her perfectly timed affection is honest and real.  Her connection to my heart is a direct route.
Suitcase by Over the Rhine always takes me back to that warm day in February that he left us.  A host of confusing emotions took lead role.  I came into that hospice room not knowing what exactly to feel or do.  I knew it was coming. I felt relief that it was all over.  I felt nervous about seeing an image of my lifeless father.  I felt as if I needed to plant my hand to my chest to keep my heart inside it's broken nest.  They let me have my time with him and as I lay my head on the familiar spot of his chest, I instinctively grabbed his hand and gasped.  It was warm.  His soul was gone but his blood was still flowing through his body.  Air in my lungs, beat of my heart, bones working their hardest to keep me together...a piece of me floated away with him.
Today, almost 5 years since we said our goodbyes, that part of me is back.  Charlotte has restored life in those secret places.  She opened my eyes to the love that can only be shared by the one who has heard my heart from the inside.  I can think of my dad while laughing and crying all at once.  I can remember his dancing, our harmonies, his goofy phrases, the way he honestly loved people.  The way people honestly loved him.
So, to a man worth taking note of, happy birthday.  You loved more in your 59 years than most will in their countless time here.  You learned your lessons and retaught them well.  Our lives will never be the same, but your love will.  It prevails death.  What a legacy you've left behind.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Happy New Year?

The snow is slowly vanishing.  All the signs that Christmas invaded our December have been boxed away. 2012 came and went without much to say that hadn't already been said.  Seeing 2 tiny bodies on the screen will be something I can forever remember.  Heartache that has a name and a familiar face will be something I try to forget.  2013 already seems breathtaking...and it's more than 2 tiny heads of lettuce reducing my lung capacity.  However, two boys playing tag at 4 A.M. makes reality clear.  God has something so much bigger than I ever imagined for myself.  Not only is it bigger, it's completely different.
This pregnancy has taken so much from me.  I have tried to keep my complaining to a minimum.  I have tried to see the end result instead of focus on how much my body, heart, and soul feel like they are foreign instruments...instruments that are dusty, old, and unwilling to make the beautiful music they once created.  I am so grateful for this gift that God has given me.  I tear up just thinking about the years I spent begging God for just one.  Just one life I could help create.  Now I am serving up two at a time.  God's image includes a great sense of humor.  It's just extremely easy to cry.  It's no problem to sigh as I ask for help rolling over in bed to relieve the heartburn that feels like it might melt my chest and throat.  Who wouldn't cringe to hear from strangers..."Are you having a Christmas present or hoping for a New Year's baby?"  "Oh ma'am/sir...I am not due until APRIL."  On the other side, in a crowded restaurant, I could swear that I must have a staff in my hand as people magically part to get out of my way.  Strangers hold doors, smile, and wish me well just as soon as they catch a glimpse of this bump.  One lady at Crossroads reached out, grabbed my hand, and said "bless that little baby in there".  I smiled and said "babies" and her eyes filled with tears as she said, "God is so good."
 I have realized, yet again, that I have the ability to choose what I see when I look in the mirror.  I can decide to be thankful for the aches and fears that having these babies bring because my body can create eyes, fingers, toes,...kickstands.  2013 can seem overwhelming, but because of the years underneath this smile, I don't mind to welcome the challenge.