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Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Missing my Daddy

"Whom have I in heaven but You?
And there is none upon earth that
I desire besides You.

My flesh and my heart fail;
But God is the strength of my
heart and my portion forever."
(Psalm 73:25-26)

Fifteen years ago, I woke up not knowing that in a few short hours, my life would change drastically. I didn't have any idea that I was about to experience something that I didn't think I would ever have to experience. I didn't realize that I would go through something that only the grace of God would get me through. I didn't have a clue that a piece of my heart would be forever rended from my being.

I was a daddy's girl. I loved to do all the things that my daddy did. My older sister spent most of her time in the kitchen with my mother doing the girly thing as she liked to cook and sew. Me? I liked to watch football with my daddy. (go Cowboys!). I liked to watch golf with my daddy. If he was outside, then that's where I wanted to be. Whatever he was doing, I was right there beside him.

On July 12, 1994, I talked to my daddy on the phone for the last time. It was my birthday and he and my mother had called me and sang happy birthday to me over the phone just like always. His final words to me were "I love you sweetheart". My final words to him were "I love you daddy".

July 14th, when my sweet husband came home to tell me the news, I could tell by the look on his face that something was terribly wrong. Different thoughts ran through my head very quickly, but the one that settled in my mind was my daddy. "Is it my daddy?", I asked him in a choked up voice. He couldn't even speak - all he could do was nod his head.

My next question was one that seems a little strange. I had all sorts of things playing out in my head. I had answers in my head that I wanted him to respond with. I had things picked out that he was supposed to say to make things better. The look on his face told me otherwise. "Is he dead?" was my next inquiry. You see, at this point, he was supposed to tell me that everything was OK. He was supposed to assure me that perhaps my daddy had been hurt in an accident, but he would be just fine. He was supposed to answer the way I wanted him to answer.

It wasn't to be that way. My dear husband just began to cry and nod his head. I couldn't even fathom what he was telling me. All I could do was sob uncontrollably and I kept yelling over and over. "You are NOT telling me this!", "This is NOT happening".

I wanted to go back and have a do-over. I wanted to go back to sleep and wake up again to different circumstances. I wanted the words to go back into my husbands mouth and come out differently.

My precious daddy, at age 58, had suffered a massive heart attack at home and had gone to be with Jesus. He had been on his morning walk. He had finished his daily bible reading. He had been about to walk out the door to go to work and God called his name. My precious mother tried everything she could as she called 911, but it wasn't to be. God was ready for him. At 54, she became a widow.

I was 32 years old. That was the absolute worst day of my life. I would never in a million years want to go back and experience that very hurt again. I miss my daddy as much today as I did 15 years ago. The hurt is easier to deal with, but the pain is the same.

The only thing that has gotten me through is my Savior.

I draw my strength from Him.
I cling to the promise of His Word.
I rest in the shadow of His wings.
I call unto Him in my distress and He answers me.

He is my rock and my salvation. I can rest in the promise of Salvation. I know that my daddy is waiting in heaven. I know that one day I will see his precious face again. I know that he is with the Lord.

I love you daddy and I miss you like crazy.

Beth

20 comments:

Tammy said...

I'm sorry to hear of your lost. I know the feeling of losing one's parent.

My dad was on kidney dialysis when he died in Jan. 01. He died on kitchen floor as my sister and I minister CPR and my mom was standing over us. He was a good man but his faith was in himself.

Then my mom died in Feb.03. I wrote about her death here http://notminebutgodsstory.blogspot.com/2008/02/joy-of-lord.html

For us here on earth death seems so final. Yet to our love ones who are with Jesus, it just a blinking of the eyes until we meet again.

love and hugs~Tammy

Misty said...

Beautiful post, Beth, thank you.

You know a little bit - from my blog - about my father choosing not to be a part of my life, so I also have the ache in my heart of being "Daddy-less" - however as I prayed last night I thought of one thing. I told Him that I was so tired of being without a father and when I get to bow at His feet one day I want to ask permission to hug His neck and kiss Him. I cried myself to sleep, tears of joy knowing that the longing in my heart does not have to be there.

So much of my learning experience has been through reading your posts and your encouraging comments on my blog-posts...thank you for sharing your heart with me. Sending my love...I'm off tomorrow for camp!

Jenny said...

Beautiful post, I am in tears.

Nancy M. said...

I understand how you feel! I loved my daddy so much too! He passed away 19 years ago next month. Like you, my dad died near my birthday and was buried on my birthday.

Paula (SweetPea) said...

Beth,
What a truly touching story. I can feel the love you had in your relationship with your daddy. I can't imagine the depth of your pain. I believe the surprise and suddenness adds such a level of pain. My step mom (of 30 years) died 2 1/2 years ago. Just 13 days prior to Cmas. Ugg. Though, I was surprised it wasn't near the level of yours. She had suffered with cancer for two years. But seeing her on Saturday and being told Sunday she was going home Monday...such shock not to see my dad's number on caller id that Monday evening but rather why he was calling. When I saw it, I thought without a doubt he was just calling to say they made it home from the hospital (he lives two hours from me). I was in shock to hear she was gone. So, to a SMALL degree I understand your pain. I never knew life or family without her. She had been in my life since a young age of about three.

Thank you for sharing your heart and pain. I pray my rambling brought even an ounce of comfort.
Love,
Paula

Beth E. said...

Oh, Beth, this just breaks my heart. I, too, am a daddy's girl. I'm so sorry your dad died at such an early age. What a comfort it is, though, to know that he is with our Heavenly father in eternity!

Thinking of you this day...
Beth

Karen said...

Today I had an interview for a teaching job at a Christian school. When the principal asked how I came to know the Lord, I could see my Daddy kneeling and praying with me and I started to cry. Daddy has been with Jesus almost 11 years. I miss him so much. I am so thankful for your Daddy. It sounds like he did a great job with you.

Lynn said...

Beth, I can't believe how similar your loss of your dad is to mine. I lost my dad who was 60yrs. old in an accident on my 34 birthday. It will be 25 years ago at the end of this month. I still long at times to be able to just sit and talk with him. I am so thankful that I know he is with Jesus. Heaven became so much more real to me at that time. Since then I have lost my mom and my husband. I'm sorry for your loss.

Edie said...

What a beautiful tribute to your daddy Beth. I can relate to your story in many ways. My Papa died August 5, 1985 just 3 months before he retired from 30 years at GM.

I was daddy's girl too. Not that we did a lot together but that we were very close, bonded in heart. He died of a heart attack also but he lived alone. I went to check on him a couple of days after he died and found him. I knew before I went into his apt that he was dead.

After that I drove to my grandma's (his mom) and tried to tell her. I was like your husband. I realized that as bad as I hurt, this was her son and she would hurt more. She also asked me if he was dead like you did with your husband.

I still miss him too. In 2000, my grandma (who was more like a mom to me) died on Aug 5. The anniversary of her son's death.

Love you sweet sister!

Yolanda said...

Beth,

My heart is aching and the tears are welling because YOU are my friend and I feel the pain that you are sharing with us and I feel as called called my Mom's name when she was 57 soon to be 58 as well. I'm so thankful for our families that Choose Christ...C.C. and allow us that insight to know that it is not over, and we will see them once again.

Cling Sister, Love ya, Yolanda

Lisa said...

Like you I was always outside with my dad while my sister was inside with my mom. Sports, yard work, fixing things, whatever he was doing I was there.

Thank You for the reminder to cherish the moments we have left. We never know when someone we love may be called home. Time to call my dad and tell him I love him one more time.

Blessings ~ Lisa

Kim... and Her Coffee said...

Oh what a tribute to your Dad and to the father he was. I'm so thankful he is with our Daddy in Heaven. But, so sad for your heartache. Hugs to you Friend.

LisaShaw said...

Beth,

This just deeply touched my heart. I was a Grandpa's girl and the Lord called him home in 2007 but I'm still a Grandpa's girl. The pain is always deep when the ones we love so deeply are called home...

The love, strength and comfort of our LORD is what keeps us until we see them again.

I love you.

I'm also sorry I missed your birthday. I pray that it was filled with the comfort of the Lord.

Cricket said...

Beth
I am so sorry...I had to control myself as I read this...I could just put myself into your shoes. I am so sorry of that loss...but I am so glad that one day you will be with him again.

Tessa

A Stone Gatherer said...

Beth as I read this I remember my father, who has been gone 19 years June 2nd! My life was forever changed too! He never met my husband and was never able to hold my children. My children never got to know their Grandpa! I wish so often that he was here to talk about spiritual things with. I have grown so much since he died and miss him terribly! He was a wonderful man who loved the Lord with all his heart, mind, soul and strength!

~ Being Woven said...

Oh, I do understand. I hold you in prayer, sweet Beth.
I lost my Daddy almost 49 years ago. I was 12, almost 13. I was the oldest child and was close, very close to my Daddy. I miss him so, even after all these years. I still have my mother (@ 95) but she is in a nursing home with dementia. I wonder about how my Daddy would look if he had lived as long as Mom. I want him to hold me when Mom is having a bad day and I am dealing with her. I want him near sometimes. Yes, the loss and the pain are still felt. But, as you say, God is ever-present. He is our Abba. He is our Strength and the Love of our lives. He holds us near, sometimes carries us.
How grateful I am for the memories I have and the love I recall from my earthly father. And how even more thankful I am that I have a loving Heavenly Father.
May your moments be blessed this day, ~ linda

valerie said...

Beth I am so sorry you lost your sweet daddy at such a young age. I know you miss him so much.
My dad is 75 and I can't even think about the day he isn't here.
My father-in-law passed away in 2001 suddenly of a heart attack while walking at the mall. I had to call my husband at work, which was 45 miles away and tell him he needed to come to the hospital. I couldn't bear to tell him he had passed away over the phone. I think he knew. That was one of the hardest things I've ever had to do. I imagine your husband felt the same way, having to tell you such devastating news.
I'm glad you have so many wonderful memories with your dad.
Love & prayers,
Valerie

elizabeth said...

You cannot imagine how tight my chest is right now from held back tears. I also was always a Daddy's girl and he has been gone for 4 and a half years now. Reading your post brought that day back with such vivid clarity. Until a person has gone through it there is no way to describe how your heart aches.

I'm finally to the point where I think of him with such a love and miss him rather than the gut-wrenching ache of loss. But you are right - throughout these years I've often wondered how anybody could get through it without our Saviour.

angelonwheels said...

eth,

First, thank you for sharing your broken heart with us. I'm sorry I missed your birthday. It breaks my heart to know you are hurting! How comforting those verses have been to me. How I admire you Beth! Thank you for posting my mom on your prayer blog. I'm lifting you up now

AuttieLane said...

I like many of these post, can understand the loss of a father. I just lost mine less that 2 months ago. He was 54 and myself 24. I like you know that I will see my father again someday, thanks to God's grace, but it still hurts terribly. Right now I am coping by writing a blog about my journey of grief. Feel free to check it out. I am sorry for your loss.
http://whenilostmydad.blogspot.com/