Monthly Archives: April 2011

A letter to all you Dads…

Isn’t it amazing to know the depth of your own pain, your own tragic story and still know how blessed you are??  There are times when I grieve where I confuse myself over my own tears; each tear intertwines into a thick woven thread of gratitude for being blessed with such an amazing man as my father and sorrow over the loss of him in our lives.

I often sit in appreciation over the qualities my Dad brought to his relationships with his daughters.  He worked very hard at being a good Dad and truthfully with three girls it really did take A LOT of hard work.  This is a list of the admirable qualities my Dad brought to our father/daughter relationship, this is also a list that I challenge all you Dads to bring to your relationship with your daughters:

You are the one person in the world who can make things better…always

Phone her, text her, email her as often as you can – it means so much to us

Be consistent in her life – never walk away

Take your daughter on dates and spend time getting to know her

Always forgive her and always allow her to feel safe asking for your forgiveness

Brag about her

NEVER – EVER – EVER allow pride to dictate your relationship

Take time every day to pray for your daughter – she will feel your prayers in your relationship and she will see them in your eyes

Believe in her; KNOW with every fibre of your being she is capable of ANYTHING – if you know this, she will too

Tell her you believe in her

Tell her why you believe in her

BE THE QUALITY OF MAN YOU WANT HER TO MARRY

Look your daughter in the eyes the same way you did the first time you held her, every time you look at her

Promise her the world…and work to give it to her

DONT – EVER – GIVE – UP

Teach her

Be firm when you need to be but gentle and appreciative of her delicate heart

Buy her flowers

Say you are sorry even when you know she is in the wrong

Write her cards with meaningful words, she will read them forever

Hug her, scratch her head, hold her hand – she loves it

Make her laugh

Hold her accountable

Go out of your way for her – she will know and appreciate it every time

Tell her you love her every chance you have

Don’t let the sun go down on your anger – never…ever

Emotionally and spiritually fight for her for as long as you need too – this is where the hero part comes into play

Know she is never too old for you to still be her Daddy

Image Source: weheartit.com

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What is love??

LOVE:  Ive been blessed with love since I was a young girl, yet Im not sure if I could summarize what exactly love means to me in  just one sentence.  I loved this blog by John Mark Ministries and the answers they received when they questioned a group of 4 to 8 year-olds by asking “What does love mean?”

“When my grandmother got arthritis, she couldn’t bend over and paint her toenails anymore. So my grandfather does it for her all the time, even when his hands got arthritis too. That’s love.” Rebecca- age 8

“When someone loves you, the way they say your name is different. You just know that your name is safe in their mouth.” Billy – age 4

“Love is what makes you smile when you’re tired.” Terri – age 4

“Love is when you kiss all the time. Then when you get tired of kissing, you still want to be together and you talk more. My Mommy and Daddy are like that. They look gross when they kiss” Emily – age 8

“Love is what’s in the room with you at Christmas if you stop opening presents and listen.” Bobby – age 7 (Wow!)

“Love is when you tell a guy you like his shirt, then he wears it everyday.” Noelle – age 7

“During my piano recital, I was on a stage and I was scared. I looked at all the people watching me and saw my daddy waving and smiling. He was the only one doing that. I wasn’t scared anymore.” Cindy – age 8

“Love is when Mommy gives Daddy the best piece of chicken.” Elaine-age 5

“Love is when your puppy licks your face even after you left him alone all day.” Mary Ann – age 4

“I know my older sister loves me because she gives me all her old clothes and has to go out and buy new ones.” Lauren – age 6

“When you love somebody, your eyelashes go up and down and little stars come out of you.” Karen – age 7

“Love is when Mommy sees Daddy on the toilet and she doesn’t think it’s gross.” Mark – age 6

“You really shouldn’t say ‘I love you’ unless you mean it. But if you mean it, you should say it a lot. People forget.” Jessica – age 8

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If birthday wishes really do come true…

I believe birthday wishes still come true in heaven, in fact I would like to believe birthday wishes carry more weight in heaven.  Tomorrow is my Dads birthday and this year I am sure my Dad would have bundles of birthday wishes.  He would have piles of wishes for each of his family members; he would wish upon them health and love, a healing in their hearts, a growing in their spirit and faith, a life of living testimony to the roots we were given particularly through the troubles we face.  And his girls, he would have so many birthday wishes for his girls.  It breaks my heart to name them all because I picture him, on his knees in prayer desperately pleading yet strikingly confident for the wishes he has in store for us.

This year however I believe his big birthday wish would be for his wife.  I know pain in a whole new level after experiencing the tragic loss of my Dad.  At times my ache is overwhelmingly large; a paralysing of the mind, a delicateness of the spirt.  YET, when I put myself in my Moms shoes, my heart is overwhelmed with sorrow.  I lost my father and this hurt is large, but the loss of a spouse is a whole new playing field that I hope to never experience.  I know my Dads hurt is large when he thinks about the burden my mom now carries and the loneliness she is forced to face at not even fifty years old; I also know if birthday wishes really do come true my Dad would blow out each and every candle thinking of her.

So this year, on behalf of my father, I am extending his birthday wishes to my mom.  I cant even comprehend the endless list of birthday wishes he would share with her and I am sure it breaks his heart knowing most of his wishes cannot come true right now.  But I believe he would wish her a day of love, of shared support and uplifting, of friendship and family that touches her heart.  He would wish her laughter and memories.  He would wish her a renewed faith and friendship in the Lord.  He would wish her the memory of whispered dreams and encouragement’s only the two of them shared.  He would wish her the thought of his hugs, and the remembrance of his kisses.  He would wish that she knew beyond a doubt how proud and amazed he is as he watches her master the toughest roll in her life.  Endless, endless wishes he would pour onto the love of his life in celebration of his birthday.

I watch my Mom navigate through this journey and I have unbelievable pride in the woman she is.  This is a woman full of strength and beauty.  A woman who can face one tragic loss after another and continue to get up and fight against life again and again.  She is a person who can identify with pain more than most but can also see the beauty in life more than most.  A Mom who continues to care for her children, to love on them, to support them, to know them, to hurt for them.  A lady who still is an amazing friend, an unbelievable grandma, a giving, uplifting, and compassionate person.  The whole world would understand if she laid down and quit but no, not my mom, she simply does not know the word quit.  As my Dad would say, my mom truly is “simply the best”.

So tomorrow as we celebrate my Dads birthday, I hope as he blows all his candles out in heaven, each and every wish he has for all of us float down to earth and land in our laps.  Thats how Dad would have wanted his birthday anyway, to be about us, rather than him…thats what made him so special.

I’ve got money in my pocket,
I like the color of my hair.
I’ve got a friend who loves me,
Got a house, I’ve got a car.
I’ve got a good mother, 
and her voice is what keeps me here. 

Feet on ground,
Heart in hand,
Facing forward,
Be yourself.
I‘ve never wanted anything. 
No I’ve, no I’ve, I’ve never wanted anything, 
so bad..(so bad). 

Cardboard masks of all the people I’ve been
Thrown out, with all the rusted, tangled
dented God Damned miseries!!
You could say I’m hard to hold,
But if you knew me you’d know,
I’ve got a good father, 
And his strength is what makes me cry. 

I’ve never wanted anything,
No I’ve, no I’ve, I’ve never
wanted anything so bad..(so bad).

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No matter…

No matter how large the pain
No matter how hard you dig your heals in
No matter who’s heart is broken
Or how bad its shattered
If you are ready or not…
Life goes on

 Image Source: weheartit.com

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For real?

Or don’t, cause either way, lets be real,
its really not going to make a lick of difference!

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Good question…

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Stepping Away…

The only analogy I can come up with is this: it’s like God is an abstract artist…and when you’re real close to a painting like this, its hard to focus, its blurred, and you cant see whats going on.  You have to walk really far back and then the whole painting comes into focus and you can see what the artist was doing.
Thats what this experience is like for us.  We’re just really, really close to this mess…but I think the further we get away from it, in time, the more we’re going to see this picture come into focus.  Man, its a really big one too, so we’ll have to walk pretty far away.
~Caleb Chapman, from MarthBeth Chapman’s book Choosing to See

I love to think in paintings.  Often I daydream myself into a beautiful painting and just stay there, quitely soaking in the scenary for a while.  Lately when my mind paints away pictures of life or of myself, my paintings seem so unidentifiable.  Stiff, grey objects, with splashes of red,  sorrow covering the canvas and hope faded away.  These painting have little light, just small dashes of color, and an overtaking grey.  I want so badly for my mind and heart to paint in color again.

I found this artist the other day and I fell head over heals.  I would LOVE Francoise Nielly to paint me!  This amazingly talented artist steals my heart when I see the color and life in her paintings.  Every subject I look at I imagine myself as them; centred in color, ozzing life and boldness from every crevas of my face.  One day I will be painted in this light, my face will tell a bright story, my eyes will be lifted and my heart will be found somewhere in the beautiful mess of color.

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Listen up!

Psst, hey you, I have something to say.  Listen up and then pass this message on to your heart.

I am here for you.

When the world seems to be swallowing you in, when you have no space to breathe and no room to mourn, I am here for you.
When darkness smothers your heart and you are tripping through life blindfolded, I am here to shine a light.
When your fight seems overwhelming and you have lost all your strength, I am here to win your battle.

When giving up seems like a viable option, I am here to encourage you on your journey.
I am here to remind you of your utmost beauty, to drill into your head how strong you are.
I am here to remind you to smile, because the smile you wear is gold!

You see through all the struggles, all the pain, through every year of life, and every heartbreak faced, it is me who has never left you.
I will not walk away now.
It is me who helped to pick you up, who brushed you off, who made you move forward without offering you a choice.
It is me who whispered strength into your ears as your mind and spirit battled.

I am not walking away now.
You are not alone.
And believe it or not, you are stronger than ever.

I love you.

Sincerely,
Your Inner Strength

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