Tag Archives: daddy

the cool kids, part 2


I apologize sincerely if any of these pictures are redundant. As I see it we can all use a little visual peace, and my fire and sunset pictures are nothing if not peaceful.


So as I mentioned Saturday, last week Noah had a friend come up from North Carolina. He drove a long four hours to stay for only thirty six hours, sad face. It was a good time however and we did a LOT more than I photographed. And the above picture is horribly blown out. That’s what I get for waiting until last minute at 7:45 in the morning before he’s got to head back home.

fire pit against the post sunset sky

fire pit against the post sunset sky

Both nights that he was here we had the fire pit going. The first night for s’mores but the second was just for kicks and giggles. We aren’t in a city and have to street lights so we have the best view (of my life so far) of the night sky, and thankfully the first night he was here was also had clear skies.

So dark, warm and smokey. I love going to bed with the smell of campfire in my hair and on my skin.

So dark, warm and smokey. I love going to bed with the smell of campfire in my hair and on my skin.

pinks and purples and blues, oh my

pinks and purples and blues, oh my

What an amazing sunset we had too. We’re always so glad when our friends can come and share in this glory that God has given us.

Scott was home both nights (oh have I mentioned I LOVE his new schedule!?!) and was able to get out the fishing pole and play around a bit. We have yet to catch a fish off our bulkhead, but one day we will, I’m certain of it.


“two weeks, two days” by my mom.


Please excuse me if the entry title is not correct. These last few weeks have flown by and also seemed like a lifetime. They have been like walking through jello, being in an altered state, dazed, like what you see in movies when people are intoxicated or drugged. There have been times of precise alertness and times of confusion and memory lag. I go to the freezer to get something from the pantry. I go from the front of the house to the office in the back and wonder what I am there for. It takes me easily three times as long to accomplish any task.

There is an incredible amount of paper work and telephone calls after someone dies. Although we had prepared as best we knew how, there are still many, many loose ends to tie up. And I’m doing this on two or less cylinders. Thankfully, I have very good friends in place who are walking with me, talking me through all of this and reminding me of conversations with bankers, employers, lawyers, etc. They also are making sure I eat and check up on my sleep schedule. What do people do when they have to face this without dear friends and Jesus? I can’t imagine!

Lily is a comfort even as she grieves. She is mirroring all of the feelings I’m experiencing. Joy: She exultantly greets Papa in the morning on the patio, as she looks at the clouds. “Hi Papa! Good morning!” Sorrow: she mimics me as I sob or gasp for breath. After a few mimics, it becomes comic relief and I have to laugh. She expresses anger, “I don’t like Papa!” When I ask why, she says, “He is happy and we are sad!” She has her own grief. After watching the video from the service: the first time she laughed and pointed out everyone: “there’s Papa when he was young! There’s Papa when he was a baby! There’s me! There’s Paige, etc.” Second time through, same response. She wanted to watch a third time and when I said no, because she needed to eat breakfast, she cried inconsolably. I relented and let her watch a third time and she sat silently and cried silently. Afterward I hugged her for a long time.

This is a continuation of the journey Wayne and I started when he was first diagnosed. Only this leg of the trip, I’m travelling without my life partner. People use the term surreal. I’m going to have to look that word up.

One thing I am happy about: I dearly wanted to travel with Wayne right up to the door that separates earth and eternity. God granted me that desire. I can rest in knowing we fulfilled our vows, “till death do us part.” Thanks be to God.

A week since you went home



It’s been a week since you left. What a busy week it was! It was busy with funeral plans and attending the viewing and funeral and burial. Three separate days of events. Sunday we could rest, in theory, but even Sunday was busy. Let me back up.

After the viewing we arrived home to find your little toy Poodle, Gibbs, quite disoriented. Something wasn’t quite right. Momma decided she and her sister Susan would go to the vet and get Gibbs checked out. They didn’t get back home until 3:30 a.m. Saturday morning. Saturday was your funeral.

Your service was beautiful, the video momma made for you was just lovely. Everybody cried. You had about 270 folks at your funeral, give or take another 100. Everybody cried at one point or another. Lakia and Allison sang the song you wanted them to sing, and they did a great job. Gary, Darryl (all the way from Colorado) Bruce, Carole, Denise and Felton all shared what you meant to them, or read scriptures.

Once we were back home momma laid down and slept for a few hours. After being at the vet, and then emotionally drained from the funeral, she was exhausted. We thought Sunday would be a day of rest but that turned out a bit crazy too. You see some drunk driver came barreling down our street and slammed right upside Aunt Susan’s car, then proceeded to swerve up into the driveway. It seems they broke their axle and their front wheel came off into the yard. Dennis, your neighbor, saw it all happen (he was up early! ) and followed the drunk all the way out to Princess Anne, where the police caught up with him and arrested him. Susan had to get a rental and the tow truck came for their car. But the best part was that YOU had the foresight to install security cameras so we got to watch the crash over and over, from three different angles. What a welcome distraction to an otherwise very sad day!

Monday it was time to see you off to your  final resting place. We rode in the limos you ordered all the way out to your cemetery. The service was quick but very well done. You were buried with full military honors. Complete with a bugler and a gun salute. Your friend Chaplain Moore did your service, he did a great job and to your satisfaction did share the good news of Jesus with the small crowd in attendance.


After we arrived from your burial, your best friends stayed here and had lunch with Momma and us kids. They laughed and shared stories of you, shared of your desire to have relationships with your co-workers and not just be their supervisor. Mom said one fella had told her “Wayne was the only boss I had who wanted to go see a movie with me, just to be with me.” They all marveled at your desire to be friends to all these different people from all walks of life.

Over the weekend I heard a few people say after the funeral “wow, I really didn’t know him!” The National Guard guys didn’t know you were so involved in ministry, and the ministry folks didn’t know you were so involved in National Guard. Mom says that’s because you gave 100% to every single thing you did. I also think it’s because when you were with someone, it was all about THEM, not about you or your accomplishments or what you’ve been busy doing, but really about the one you were with at that exact moment.  Wow, what a person, to give their honest and full attention to hundreds of different people throughout your life, making each one feel loved and special.

I want to be like you when I grow up. Lots of people want to be like you when they grow up.

I love you daddy and miss you. I told you I was going to miss you but that I’d be okay. So far that’s been true. Even after you’ve gone you’re still showing me things and teaching me truths, slowly and in love. What a gift you are and how incredibly lucky I am to have had you for my earthly father.

Always your daughter,


things to do, and not do, at a viewing.


When you are going to a viewing of a friend or family member who’s recently passed over, there are a few things you should, and should not do.

1) Don’t say merely “he/she’s in a better place”. Instead say either “they are in heaven” or “they aren’t in pain” (assuming they died of a painful issue.) if you aren’t a believer or you don’t know where the decedent has gone on to, just say “they will be missed.”

2) Do say I’m sorry your lost your dad/mom/sister/cousin/etc, NOT just “I’m sorry for your loss”. And follow it up with “I remember when they did/said….(something funny, sweet,brave,etc)” Try to relate to the bereaved.

3) Don’t hold ON TO the bereaved, They are wobbly enough as it is. If they look wobbly then YOU sit down and ask them to join you.

4) Don’t be a “close talker” (it’s a Seinfeld thing). Keep your head at least two heads away from the one you’re talking to.

5) Do take time to walk around and see the flowers sent. Make a point later on,  to let the senders know you saw the flowers they sent and how lovely they were.

I’m sure I will come up with things to not do at a funeral and maybe I’ll post those tomorrow. It’s going to be a long weekend as we go here and yon. I appreciate your continued prayers.

Special Thanks to Kathleen for coming and sitting with me. Thanks to Geri for driving all the way from N.C. to be my “plus 1” AND for bringing me cake with an extra tub of Geri made icing just for me. Thanks to Jeff for coming along so Geri wouldn’t get lost. Thanks to Lee for coming from Kentucky and Mike for coming from Annapolis and for Daryl for coming from Colorado. I really REALLY hope we end up with a HUGE crowd tomorrow, mom picked catering for 300 people. So if you’re reading this and you weren’t sure, by all means, come on!

Dear Daddy


Today I cried in the bathroom at Max and Ermas. I was remembering your head in my hands and how I breathed on you and how my hair took out your oxygen tube but it didn’t matter because what I didn’t realize was, you were already gone. I heard that noise you made, the gurgle. I heard you expel one final breath. I searched frantically for a heart beat, for a pulse. I put my hand in front of your lips to try and feel a breath. I asked mom for a stethoscope and she said “do you think he’s gone?” I said “I don’t know, I can’t feel his heart beat, I can’t find a pulse, I can’t feel his breath.” But you were still warm, so my brain told me you were still there.

You weren’t.

Mom came barreling over to you, she said “get out of the way, I’m getting in bed with him.” I asked her right there, with the sobs and ugly cries, “where is all this power coming from? You’ve been so weak and now you’re bossing me around?” She said “I want to be with him. It’s what I always wanted.” She got in bed with you. I kept feeling around trying to feel your heart beating. She said you were gone, she could tell, and for me to tell her what time it was. I looked at the clock, it was 12:46 a.m. I told her that. She told me to write it down. I wrote it down. She sobbed. Oh how she loves you! She loves you and you loved her well. You loved her because Christ first loved YOU and loved HER and showed you how to love her and everyone else around you.

Today was hard. It was rainy and cloudy. Add my S.A.D. to the loss of you and it was a hard day. I didn’t wake up until 10:30. I feel like I could sleep for a week. I am looking forward to getting home just so I can sleep. I want to pack this up and call it a day. But I can’t. I have to walk through this. You walked through this and I’m going to walk through this. I love you daddy. I always have and I always will. You are the first man I ever kissed and the first man I wanted to marry and the first man to tell me you loved me.

Always and forever your daughter,