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Monday, September 28, 2015

I Am My Father's Daughter

Today was filled with emotion as we laid a family member to rest. The gentleman who passed away was dearly loved by those I hold most dear. My husband says "he treated me like a son" and "I grew up around them and he taught me so much". Thought I didn't know his well, I know the scenario all too well. My heart breaks for the wife he leaves behind, his children, and his present as well as future grandchildren. On the drive home, a favorite song by Jewel came on "My Father's Daughter" and I wept for the child I once was, for the adult I am...but mostly for cousin David's children.

I am my Father's Daughter
I have his eyes
I am the product of his sacrifice
I am the accumulation of dreams of generations
And their stories live within me like holy water
I am my Father's Daughter

The immediate pain of losing a father is brutal. When I was 17 it shook me to the core. In my journal I wrote about how my life felt meaningless without him by my side. I stayed angry and lost for a long time. It's hard to explain to those who have never lost a parent...but it's a wound that never heals. The moments that are supposed to be 100% joy filled, aren't. They are joyful, but there is a sadness and a longing. There is a void.

If you aren't quite sure what I mean, let's look at those joyful moments:

Example Moments:
You graduate from high school....

You make the Dean's list at college...

Your boyfriend proposes...

It's time to walk down the aisle...

You find out you are having a baby...

You hold your child for the first time...

Response from a Fatherless Child:
...the first person you want to call is your Daddy. Since you can't call him, you just cry because it was his encouragement, love, and belief in you that got you to this bittersweet moment. You just don't feel much like celebrating because he's not at your side.

This is no different I'm sure for a daughter who lost a mother or a get the point.

Jewel's lyrics are spot on. I most certainly am my Father's daughter and he sacrificed much so I could be who I am today. I love telling my children about their grandfather. Even though the stories make us smile, I desperately wish he was here to hold them in his arms. I want them to know what he feels like, how his voice sounds, see the wrinkles around his eyes, smell his cologne or the way his hands could be gentle yet strong. Those stories live within me and I try my best to bring him alive for them.

At the funeral today, I had no words. All I could offer was my hug because no words will be enough. No words can take away the pain. The faith in knowing we will all be reunited is the consolation, because being the survivor is painful. We know our loved one is in the arms of God, so we take our broken bodies and shattered hearts and we go on.

If you are a broken kindred spirit, please know you are not alone. It's okay to grieve. I don't feel sorry for myself, but I do feel sadness for the little girl I was 20+ years ago. I need to tell you, it's also okay to feel joy. There was a time when I couldn't understand why people were laughing and smiling. I wanted to scream "don't you know my world stopped turning?" and time softened me as I was reminded of my faith. Jesus held me in his arms as I knelt in prayer and my smile returned. My laugh found it's way home and I realized I wasn't disrespecting my Father's memory, I was carrying on his dream/his legacy.

Please say a prayer for those who are hurting today. May they find peace.


May your paths be abundantly filled with lemons, sugar, sunshine, and the dreams of generations!

Crystal is a church musician, babywearing mama, business owner, active journaler, writer and
blogger, Blog Tour Manager with WOW! Women on Writing, Publicist with Dream of Things Publishing, as well as a dairy farmer. She lives in Reedsville, Wisconsin with her husband, four young children (Carmen 8, Andre 7, Breccan 2, and Delphine 7 months), two dogs, two rabbits, four little piggies, a handful of cats and kittens, and over 230 Holsteins.

You can find Crystal blogging and reviewing books, baby carriers, cloth diapers, and all sorts of other stuff at: and here:

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