So since my last blog I’ve had multiple ideas on what I wanted to write about next but nothing really stood out to me until Easter weekend when I saw majority of my friends. We were coming home for Easter as always, but we ended up coming home on that Thursday…
Over the past year and a couple of months tragedy has struck way to many times, not only for me but for others as well. I have seen so many of my friends hurt in unimaginable ways because the loss of a loved one, and to make it worse every death was a DAD.
So as I’m writing this I want you to keep my dear friends in mind:
• Candis Feazell • Taylor Horsfall •
• Kendal Jones • Jordan Talley • Kaylin Goss • Carter James •
Over the years I had the opportunity to grow with each and every one of them, whether that was in high school or college. Some of us were closer than others, but regardless each of them have impacted my life. I either knew their dad and I considered them family, met them through the friendship, or didn’t at all but still heard great stories about them. Regardless if I was close with them or not, they are the people they are today because of them. Our dads will forever live through us now and will continue to shine their light.
It wasn’t until my dad died when I actually understood what death was. Of course everyone has the idea, but it hits you in a much different way when you experience it yourself. Its harder, deeper, and much darker than anything you could imagine. So for those whose dad passed before mine I’m sorry I wasn’t there like you were there for me. I didn’t fully grasp the aftermath of a death especially when its a parent. If I could go back I would do so much more than what I did do. BUT that being said THANK YOU for being there for me. For always checking up on me, reaching out at the most random hours of the day, and making sure my family and I were loved. Thank you.
So Easter weekend was the first funeral I attended since my dad died and that’s where I saw majority of the people on that list. It was so overwhelming seeing all of us. 22-year-old college students all sharing the worst thing to have in common in one place. It was so sad to see all of us standing there, but at the same time it was the most comfortable and peaceful feeling. We could relate to each other. We all stood in a circle talking until it was time to go in and sit down. As I walked in it felt like a million pounds was laying on my chest. It brought back so many memories/feelings from my dads service. We sat down all in a row and the music started playing. Carter and his mom were the first to walk through the doors and tears started rolling down my face. Carter (my brother from another mother) carried himself with such poise, unlike me when I walked into my dads service. I lost it. But not Carter. He held his head high, holding his mommas hand, and embraced the moment. Seeing that I was able to understand why people are so short and sweet when they give their condolences. I WAS SPEECHLESS. I had no idea what I was going to say to him and his family afterwards. What do you say to someone who is having the worst day of their life. Nothing you say makes the hurt stop no matter how hard you try. I just wanted to take the pain away from them, take it away from all my friends that have been hurt by losing their dad. It sucks, it’s not fair but it’s life.
So my point to that was to let people know that I get it. I get why people act so weird when it comes to death. Death is a tricky thing. You don’t want to take light of the situation because then you look like a heartless jerk, but you don’t want to take it so deep that it just makes the person feel (cry) worse. You have to find that happy medium.
Death is ugly, but it shows true beauty
I feel like I can speak for everyone on that list or anyone dealing with death when I say this. When I got the call that my dad had passed my first thought was “I don’t want to be sad”. I thought I was going to become weak. I thought that the rest of my life would be pure sadness and darkness. But I was wrong. Losing my dad was a wake up call to me. It changed me in ways I didn’t think was possible. I realized I am STRONG. It took some
convincing from Candis, but she wouldn’t let me think anything different and she was right. I don’t think I would be the person I am if it wasn’t for her. Through all 17 years of our friendship she has had my back no matter what. She was/is my rock. I became the person I always wanted to be. I’m not hesitant about my decisions anymore. I just do them. I am more motivated than ever. My dad is my motivation. I knew I would not let death win. It was NOT going to take over me. The sadness, the heartache, that madness, and everything else that comes with death. I wasn’t going to let it consume me. I was going to do everything to make him proud. I found the beauty in death. I learned that I will never be alone. I don’t complain about the little things anymore, there are far more important/worse things to complain about.
When I talk to my friends I notice they feel the same way. Those people listed above are some of the strongest people I know. You don’t understand what “strong” means until you experience something traumatic in your life, whatever that may be. Strong doesn’t mean that we don’t show emotion or get upset, it’s a different kind of strong and it’s hard to explain. The type of strong that I see through each of them is something you should strive for. They’re caring, more caring than anyone I’ve ever met. They are understanding. Each of them are selfless. They would go above and beyond just see someone smile. Most of all each of them are open-minded, understanding, and accepting. We bend but don’t break. I will be forever grateful for them.
We take back our power.
Embrace the change.
Face our fears.
Respect the new normal.
“Some of us think holding on is being strong but sometimes it’s letting go”