Saying Goodbye

the folks

My folks on their wedding day in 1966.

Just over a week ago my whole world completely changed. My dad died.

It was sudden. Complications after a medical procedure.

Even if it hadn’t been sudden it would still have shattered my world.

You see, my dad was my partner. We have shared the responsibility of horse ownership for decades. We co-own a horse property and have shared the upkeep of it for almost a decade.

For the first time, I’ve got to handle it all on my own. I hope I’m up to the challenge.

me and dad

Dad and I one Easter Sunday back in the early 1980’s

My dad was a lot more than just my partner though. He was a proud veteran of the Air Force. Although my friend Misty always thanked him for fighting in the Civil War every Veterans Day — something that always made him laugh. He was a Texan, despite being born in Colorado and raised in New Mexico.

Most of all though, Dad was a deeply devout Christian. Both my folks grew up in church and raised me going to church. I was a lucky kid. Dad loved old gospel music. He loved the big, booming organ his church was known for. It was all too much for me, too formal and rigid. Dad loved it all though. He’d play CDs at full volume, filling the house with hymns. I hated it but loved how happy it made him.

I’ve learned a lot in the days since Dad died. I’ve learned more about him thanks to the memories of my family. I’ve seen that he meant more to my cousins than I thought. I’ve learned that he touched many more lives than I ever knew.

I’ve also gotten to see first hand how a solid faith in the Lord can help you grieve. Even through my tears, I’ve been able to keep my eyes on the Lord. I’ve been comforted by the fact that my dad is now home in Heaven, reunited with all the loved ones he’d lost over the years. Sadly, some members of my family don’t have a relationship with the Lord to comfort them. It’s been almost as hard to watch them grieve in the absence of faith as it has been to grieve on my own.

I firmly believe God will always bring something good out of something bad. I’ve shared my faith with everyone I’ve seen struggling with this loss. One cousin told me he was praying for me. Those are words I’ve never heard him say. I hope maybe he’s got a little seed of faith planted in his heart now. I hope others do too. I hope some new believers will be the good to come out of my loss.

And I hope my dad is fishing in Heaven. With his dad and his brother. And maybe Jesus if He’s got some spare time.




Fishing with Dad in Colorado.


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