I will be taking a blog break this week.
Saturday night my step dad unexpectedly passed away, and I will be spending the week with my family. This man meant the world to me, one of those things I never communicated enough. He voluntarily took on the role of father years ago and did the job better than anyone else could. My next book is dedicated to him, but he won't get to see that. He was Mr. Fix-It, Mr. Supportive, a grandfather who intentionally made memories, a wonderful cook, as quotable as Twain, a man with a stunning intellect and brilliant sense of humor. For those of you girls/ladies who had a parent who bailed, you will understand the heart-breaking loss of a man who stood in the gap and said, “Be her dad? You bet I want that job.” You never outgrow the need for that. He was the guy who drove almost 4 hours with my mother my freshman year of college on a week night to attend some small potatoes choir concert, only to take me to dinner afterward, then drive the four hours back. I have thousands of stories just like that. I am grateful for the time we had.
He was the man who fixed everything–from my toilet to some encouragement for a broken heart. The man who came to my house in the middle of the night when I set off a house alarm I didn't even know was connected, waking up my entire town. The man who picked up my car in another state at 3:30 in the morning because it had broken down, and I'd had to leave it, and he knew I was upset. He was the dad who shared my dislike for visitations, funerals, weddings, and awkward situations, events where I would gradually fade to the back, knowing he'd meet me there and put his arm around my shoulder and not have to say anything at all And this week when we say our final goodbye, he won't be there to hug me to him and give me that smile that said, “You and me gotta stick together.”
He was my dad, my friend, one of my biggest cheerleaders; and while we know God is in control, right now we also know our family will never be the same, and there will be a gap now permanently open. I appreciate your prayers for my family and for his.