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Stay Strong and Keep Standing!

Dear Family,

(Journal notes Nov. 12, 2023)

Here we are two years later after our lives were changed dramatically. I still don’t understand this side of heaven why your father had to leave us so suddenly.

The first year almost seemed like a blur now that I look back. I was just doing whatever I felt that I needed to do to get through to the next thing. I know for certain that I have slowed down in many ways. The most obvious is taking time to stop and observe people, to be present and spend time with them. I also know for sure this has drawn me closer to God depending on him to give me the strength and wisdom that I don’t have in myself. I have learned that a broken heart can really be an open heart. Open in places that may have never been before. Jesus has come into those places doing a refining work in me and giving comfort as a bonus. The loneliness is still real and relentless. It’s in those times we must put on a smile and rejoice in the happy memories for which we are grateful.

The second year almost seemed harder than the first. I think because the reality has set in, he is not on a business trip soon to be home. I know we all miss his chats, his laughs, his jokes, advise and so much more. I miss his everyday life. Just he and I. I have continued to write to him nearly every day for two years. I thank the Lord for him and truly believe we were meant for each other. That’s why it’s so hard to be apart. We were truly best friends, like a marriage should be.

Someone said, “You can’t wait until life isn’t hard anymore before you decide to be happy.” I’ve been working on that. I know your father would want all of us to continue and be happy about it. My happiest moments are with you kids. I am truly grateful you have blessed me with MY GRANDS!

I believe your father would be so proud of all of us pushing through everything these last two years. I know it was much harder than I ever thought it would be. He was our safety net and our visionary. But I also know that strength has come out of us we didn’t know existed. Two things in life change you and you are never the same: Love & Grief. If you have a spouse that truly loves you, you are very fortunate indeed and you must cherish that every day!

Here's the truth: Life goes on. I know it is not the same. The sun will rise, and seasons will change. God’s love and his word never change. Grief is not the end…………it’s just a bend in our road.

Every day may not be great, but in every day, there is always something to be grateful for. Some say when you come out of a storm, you won’t be the same person that walked into it. That’s what the storm is about. You either quit or you keep going. They both hurt. The choice is ours. As a family we stand strong together.

Maya Angelo said, “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” I hope you all know that both of your parents love you so much and now I carry it for the both of us. Let’s all Stay Strong & Keep Standing Together!

I believe God will continue to make a way for us as we trust in Him. Isaiah 43:18-19.

Happy Thanksgiving,

Love, MOM

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