To the girl approaching Father’s Day without a dad – I see you.
To the girl who doesn’t have a dad to…
- walk her down the aisle
- hold her babies
- teach her about home maintenance
- show up when her car has a flat
- have dinner with
- sit on the porch with
- feed the birds
- enjoy their favorite activities
- hug and tell “I love you” to
I see you!
The last couple weeks have been hard for me in a way I wouldn’t wish on anyone!
Every time I’ve seen or heard an ad for Father’s Day, I quickly flip the page, avert my eyes, or turn the channel, in order to avoid the fact that I don’t have a dad to physically celebrate with this weekend.
Not having my dad in my life these last two years has probably been one of the hardest challenges and facts of life that I’ve had to face. It’s not something I ever imagined I would face as I approach my thirtieth birthday. I’ve never been the person who thought my parents were going to be in my life forever, but I also never imagined facing my thirties without one of them.
One of the things that has helped me recently was reading ‘Option B’ by Sheryl Sandburg. The subtitle of this book said it all for me “Facing Adversity, Building Resilience, and Finding Joy.” Those have been the challenge of facing life without my papa.
I faced adversity in watching him battle cancer and eventually lose that fight. I’ve had to build resilience and find joy in the days that followed his battle ending.
One of the things in this book that I loved was Sheryl talking about the impact that the loss of her husband had on her, her kids, and the people around them and I have to say that was one of the things that was super encouraging to me as we buried my dad. Seeing the people that showed up to celebrate his life was such a testament to the incredible man that he was.
“It’s like you’ve been through a portal” Jeff told me “you can’t go back, you’re going to change, the only question is how.”
Option B by Sheryl Sandberg
That quote hit me like a ton of bricks – my life totally changed when I lost my dad and while it often feels like it was in a bad way, there has been so much good that came from the experience of grief and loss. I’ve truly spent time over the last two years building resilience and finding joy each and every day. I had a door in my life that closed and I could have continued to look at it, hoping that it would re-open, but that would have kept me from seeing the door that was opening ahead of me.
When one door of happiness closes, another opens, but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one which has been opened to us.
And while the journey of looking to the open door hasn’t been easy, especially when Father’s Day or other holidays come around, I know that I can find joy in the days ahead.
So for those of you out there who are facing a Father’s Day without your dad, I understand the hurt and pain that you feel and I hope you know that the days ahead, while hard, can also bring you so much joy.
Sending you lots of love this weekend!