It’s Been a Month Since I Lost My Dad

On January 8th, my dad lost his battle with a series of strokes that started almost eighteen full months before the end. It was hard to watch him go from this strong, stubborn, headstrong man to a weak and frail body. It was even more difficult to finally say goodbye. He was not only my father he was a mentor, teacher, and a friend. As an introvert by nature and a pastor by profession, friends are hard to come by for me. I am extremely close to my family, and I trust them completely. All of that together has made his passing one of the most difficult seasons of my life.

Over the past month, I have noticed a few things about myself that might you to understand someone going through a loss like this.

1. I Am Having Hard Time Controlling My Emotions
Little things trigger the tears for me. I am crying while I am writing this article. I spent the last hour of my birthday sobbing uncontrollably. It seems to come out of nowhere. I see a picture or remember a special time, and I break down. I am still struggling and have no idea when it will end.

2. I Am Tired All the Time
I suppose it comes from the emotional weight. I feel like I am carrying a fifty-pound sack all day long. I feel very little motivation to do things, even the things I enjoy.

3. I am Trying to Figure Out How to Help My Mom
I am venturing out into unknown territory. Mom cared for dad the past couple years, and I want to be there for her now. I am not sure what that looks like yet. I try to text frequently and call every day or two. I am bringing her to visit. I am not sure what else I am supposed to do. I know I want to be the best son I can be to my mother.

4. I Am More Empathetic to Others Loss
I have noticed how differently I feel when I hear the stories of other people losing loved ones. This morning in my prayers I remembered all those individuals who have lost a family member in the past week and I felt a deep, unfamiliar pain. I pray God is using this to soften my heart.

5. I Think About Heaven More Than Ever
I am glad my father was a man of faith. I long for the day I can see him again. I grieve, but not as one who has no hope.

Beside my desk attached to my filing cabinet is a wooden cross with magnets on the back. It hung inside of my dad’s coffin. I see it every day now. It reminds me of my father, his faith and the grace of our Lord Jesus. This has been a difficult time in my life, and with the grace of God, I am making it through each day.

Thanks for your thoughts and prayers and may God bless you all.

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2 thoughts on “It’s Been a Month Since I Lost My Dad

  1. It will get better Matt. I lost a husband to cancer. . . . I would burst into tears driving home from work when a song would come on the radio we might have danced to. I think it is a part of the grieving process. I will never forget him. I lost my Dad in 1970 from a massive heart attack. . . I was away at school and never got to say good by. He was my best friend, and even now there are days I think of him and shed tears. But there are days when I think of both these men and smile at some of the crazy things they did . . . I have great memories of both of them. Those are the best things to remember!

  2. I can relate to much of this, but particularly about thinking about heaven differently. When my dad was in his last days, I was at church one Sunday and we sang, I Can Only Imagine. That song had always been a nice idea, now it was going to be my dad’s reality and I couldn’t get the words past my lips. That song still gets me when I hear it – will I dance for you Jesus, or in awe of you be still? Heavy stuff, but comforting too.

    Seeing my mom sad and lonely was the hardest part of my dads death for me. Like you say, it was hard to know what to do. Lots of extra visits and phone calls for a while. Then she started dating and oh, my. I hope you never have to go through some of the dating conversations I went through with mom, but that’s a whole other conversation 🙂 She eventually remarried and is very happy. May not be your moms path, but prayer and being there for her will help her find hers. Continuing to pray for you both.

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