Father’s Day

monarch butterfly amongst yellow coneflowers

So, I mentioned a few posts ago that my dad died at the end of February and I haven’t been really sure how to blog about it.  But I do feel like I need to.  I feel like in some little way, I need to share who he was with the Universe.  And, after three months, it just seemed like I need to just say what I want to say and get on with it.

On the 29th of April my mom, sister, niece and I went to a butterfly release that hospice was holding in memory of the people they’d cared for.  The photo above is actually from a trip Eric and I took to Philadelphia a few years ago, but I thought it was appropriate.  The ceremony was very nice and I think it was a nice way for families to say goodbye.

It seems like though, the past few months have been a series of goodbyes.  On Memorial Day, we went to the National Cemetery to visit my Dad’s grave and see his headstone for the first time.  I can’t even begin to put into words how hard it was.  Seeing his name and dates on that stone made it so real, so permanent.  But, the ceremony for Memorial Day was really moving and it was so nice to see so many people out there celebrating their loved ones and honoring those that have served their country.  It was refreshing to spend Memorial Day in the spirit of the day.

rows of headstones at the National Cemetery with American flags in front of each

Last week was my Dad’s birthday.  He would have been 68.  I spent the day in Wichita in meetings for work, but he was never far from my mind.  Eric took my mom out to lunch and brought her some flowers, because he knew it would be a hard day for her.

And today, is Father’s Day.  And I am missing him something fierce.   I went to a funeral yesterday for the husband of a friend who died suddenly.  And it truly made such an impression on me.  My parents spent the last 47 years at each others’ sides.  And I know that the loss that I am feeling probably doesn’t even touch the loss that my mom is feeling.  My dad was truly an amazing man, and I hope that one day I can live up to the legacy he’s left me.  I hope too that one day I can look back and say that I spent my life with my best friend by my side.

a man and woman sitting at the edge of a river at the bottom of a deep canyon with cameras around their necks

I found these photos recently, photos I’d never seen before, of the two of them on one of their adventures.  They loved to visit the National Parks and explore and take photos.  I get my love of photography from my Dad.  They set up the camera on a tripod and snapped these photos, and I think they speak for themselves about how they spent their lives together.

a man and woman on a desert cliff, the woman holds a water bottle and has her head on the man's shoulder

I imagine that one day, they’ll be off on yet another adventure together.  But, for now, we’re just missing him.

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