I guess I should warn you. I’m still grieving the death of my dad. I say still, but it’s only been two and a half months. Experts say it’ll take lots longer.

Anyway, the upshot is that I’m somewhat emotionally unstable right now. That’s normal I understand, but it sure is unpleasant. I can be “dancing” one minute and desperately trying not to be pulled down in the undertow of a wave of grief the next.

Most of the time I’m doing pretty well. But I feel like Father’s Day is this huge dark monster that is barreling toward me wanting to smother me.

There’s been one task I just can’t bring myself to do. We had an online guest book for Dad and I downloaded all the entries and have formatted them into an attractive book. For the life of me I haven’t been able to walk into Staples and get it copied. Just can’t do it.

So Phil did it for me today. It looks great. I put two copies in envelopes to my sister and brother. Then I actually looked at it. It’s missing the first entry — the one I wrote to my dad. I thought they had made a printing error, so I went into my PDF file. My PDF was wrong. So I assumed that I had replaced a page incorrectly or something. No, my original document is wrong. And I no longer have any other resource to find what I had written. I lost it (not the paper, my emotional control). (I can’t believe how important this is to me.)

Then I remembered that I had thrown away a printout from the online guest book. Months ago. Would it still be in my throw-away paper box? I started going through it, page by page, not expecting to find anything. I hadn’t sifted through 20 pages before I found it! Trust me, it should not have been there. I threw it away about May 1st and I throw away LOTS of paper every day. For it to be at the top of the box is nothing but the grace of God. Thank You, Lord.

So I will ask Phil to go back to Staples and make new copies. It’s worth the additional $18. It’s worth the hassle. We had no memorial service. This is the only “tribute” I have.

Having written this, I know there are several “lies” in it. Not lies I am telling, lies the enemy is telling me. Of course it’s not my only “tribute” to Dad. The best tribute to him is a life well lived. Scripture teaches us to honor our father and mother, that we may have a long life. Honoring one’s parents doesn’t end when their earthly life ends.

And of course, the dark monster of Father’s Day grief isn’t going to smother me. In fact, if my limited experience in this teaches me anything, the anticipation of it will be worse than the actual day. (OK, so stop anticipating it, right?) At most, the monster will cloud out the sun for a day and then go back into hiding.

Grief come in waves and they’re waves that are best succumbed to for a time. Not wallowed in, but not resisted either. Both are unhealthy. Neither promotes emotional healing. I wish there was a magic pill that brought instant healing. Because this is no fun. But I’m reminded of a line in worship song that is one of my favorites — “When the darkness closes in, Lord, still I will say — Blessed be the Name of the Lord, blessed be the Name. Blessed be the Name of the Lord, Blessed be Your Glorious Name.”

I thank God for His grace toward me and toward my Dad. And I thank Him for healing, because I am so much better today, June 8th, than I was on April 8th or May 8th.

I hate the narcistic nature of this blog, but perhaps it will minister to someone. God remains good and He remains faithful. All the time.

Comment by dansdesk…
I don’t think I’ve handled my mom’s death near as well as you have your dads. I’ve been mulling over some similar blogs related to my grieving process. We should continue to compare “notes” because I’m certainly not healing as quickly as I would have liked. Dan Ghramm www.dansdesk.org
Wednesday June 13, 2007 – 03:38pm (EDT)

Response by Sandyhov
The thing I have found to be most helpful have been:
(1) Reading about grieving — it assures me that I’m not losing my mind and that everything I’m going through is normal.
(2) Listening a teaching by a strong Christian teacher — it assured me that it’s OK to be this messed up even as a Christian.(
3) Cutting myself lots of slack. In the Jewish culture, the sit Shiva (sp?) for a month after a death…then they resume normal life activity. I think there’s lots of wisdom in that. I know I’m easily overwhelmed (less so all the time, but still more so than the “normal” Sandy) so I build more downtime into my schedule — even if it means not participating in things that other people expect me to participate in.
(4) Of course lots of praying friends. This has got me thinking…I think I’ll blog about the “club” aspect of losing a parent…later tonight or tomorrow. Peace to you my friend.
Thursday June 14, 2007 – 08:21pm (EDT)

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