It’s been a year since we said good bye. It’s been a year since I drove away from the hospital, the place you spent your final days on earth. It has been a year. But it doesn’t feel like that.
Sometimes it feels like it was yesterday. Other times it feels like it’s been decades.
I miss being able to pick up the phone and call you. I have so much to tell you. I have missed you at family gatherings. There is a tangible hole, the spot you should be in.
There is a little girl who joined our family in January. She is beautiful and you would adore her. She has your mischievous smile and your patience. Dad, you would love her. She brings so much joy, even on the hardest days.
I drove past our old house in Rialto and laughed as I thought about the afternoon you and Papa decided to teach me how to ride my bike without training wheels. The hill I rode down seems smaller now, less impressive. But when I conquered it that afternoon, you were so proud of me. You celebrated with me as I faced my fears. I was confident in myself because you were confident in me.
When I make your super secret biscuits and gravy recipe, I think about one thanksgiving morning. It was early and cold. You were up early in the backyard with this massive pot coating the sausage with flour over an open flame camping stove. I asked if I could help, even though you didn’t need me to, you let me keep you company.
Every time I pass the BJ’s Restaurant off El Toro, I remember our lunch dates where we’d order the wedge salad and bowls and bowls of the Chicken Tortilla soup. You’d ask about college and that boy Aaron. You’d try to pretend you didn’t like him, but you knew from the beginning that he was the one.
I look for you every time I am at church. I expect to see you in the sound booth. And how shocked everyone was to learn that the sound guy wore hearing aids.
I often find my self looking through pictures of you and trying to relive those memories. You are so missed.
Today is the anniversary of your grand entrance into heaven. I know without a doubt God said, “well done good and faithful servant.” Today is also Good Friday. The day we remember our Savior died on the cross so that we could spend eternity in heaven.
I am reminded that because Jesus died for us that I will see you again and I expect your ribs to be served at my grand entrance into heaven. You didn’t leave your homemade BBQ sauce recipe… so we are going to have a long talk when I see you again.
I love you Dad. I will see you again,