A Father’s Day Challenge

A HUGE “thank you” to grammy-b/Bren on the AMR MESSAGE BOARD for hosting the FATHER’s DAY CHALLENGE. I was very scared to scrap about my dad, who died almost 15 years ago. Thanks to the challenge, and encouragement I received from my AMR friends {who truly ARE my friends!}, I did it.

WARNING: If extremely personal journaling makes you uncomfortable, don’t read this, LOL!

ETA: I see that when I enlarged the photo, it made it too blurry to read so here’s the journaling:

Daddy,

It’s Father’s Day 2008…almost a full 15 years since you passed away in July 1993. I’ve been scrapbooking for 7 years and yet this is the first time I’ve scrapped anything about you, such a huge part of my life. I finally did it because I was “challenged” to. And because it was time. Tears are streaming down my face as I scan this old photo to use on my layout, and as I write this journaling. This is SO hard! THIS is why I haven’t done this before. I don’t want to feel this pain. I want to go on with my happy life. And all I can think and feel as I remember you is…WHY AREN’T YOU HERE??

This photo of us at my wedding hangs on the hallway wall outside my bedroom door. I see you every single day, in the photo and in my mind. Sometimes, when no one is looking,I place a kiss on my finger, reach up and touch it to your mouth. When you died, I heard from others that “time heals.” I thought this would get easier. I thought, after 15 years without you, it wouldn’t still be so painful, hurt so much. But everyone lied. It does not get easier. In most ways it gets harder.

When I graduated from college after 13 years of part-time school/full-time jobs, you were not in the audience with your quiet smile. When I had my children, you were not there to touch a newborn’s cheek. When I’ve struggled through illnesses and hard times, you weren’t here to hug me, wipe my tears, and tell me I am the best and I’ll be okay. When my kids have done things that made me so proud I wanted to burst, you were not here to burst with me.

After you died, and some other things happened in my life, I became a Christian. That’s helped make sense of some things. That’s helped provide comfort and perspective. My relationship with Jesus Christ has helped me see things in a new light, and I know you are okay. But the fact is, you as a physical being, you as the Daddy that can hug and hold and speak in words that reach my ears…YOU are not here. There is nothing that will ever make that easy or fair or less painful. So, 15 years after you died, I just wanted you to know that I still love you and miss you with all of my heart, all of my soul.

And I wish you were here.

At first, I thought I’d just post it over at AMR because those girls make me feel so secure. I know they won’t take it lightly, won’t criticize or see the imperfections. But then I figured, what the hey, let’s post it to the blog too. Scrappers are nice people and it’s OKAY to share parts of yourself, right? So thanks for looking and maybe I can Pay It Forward by inspiring YOU to scrap about something you’ve been avoiding because it’s too painful…

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