A Work In Progress

A Work In Progress

Saturday, December 7, 2019

The 20th Anniversary of My Dad’s Death

My life changed forever on December 8th, 1999.That was the day my Dad passed away.

Here are Twenty things I’ve missed in the past 20 Years without Him:

1.  I’ve missed having a close immediate Family member who is analytical like me.  My Dad was.

2.  I’ve missed being called “Jen Jen”.  No one else is allowed to call me this.

3.  I’ve missed my Dad getting to meet Jonathan.

4.  I’ve missed not having my Dad walk me down the aisle, err..sidewalk to get Married.

5.  I’ve missed getting/giving hugs from/to my Dad.

6.  I’ve missed being able to talk to my Dad after I finally grew up.  I wasn’t grown up at 25.

7.  I’ve missed having mechanical (cars) and house (maintenance) issues help. My Dad was handy like that.

8.  I’ve missed his corny jokes.

9.  I’ve missed his sensitivity.  He and I were more alike than I would ever admit when I was younger and he was alive.

10.  I’ve missed him not getting to meet Mookie and Chai.

11.  I’ve missed him not being here for the highs and lows in my life.

12.  I’ve missed our Family as it was before he passed away.  Things haven’t been the same for me since he was here.

13.  I’ve missed being able to watch him grow old.  59 isn’t young, but it’s not old either.

14.  I’ve missed the bond we had (even though we often butted heads and I didn’t see that bond until he was gone).

15.  I’ve missed hearing him sing “I know that My Redeemer Lives”, even if he often sang off key.

16.  I’ve missed getting to the “Friends” point with him.

17.  I’ve missed having a Dad for 20 years.  Period.

18.  I’ve missed his serious yet playful personality.

19.  I’ve missed wishing him a Happy Birthday for his past 20 Birthdays and having a Dad on Father’s Day for the past 20 Father’s Days.

20.  I’ve missed celebrating Christmas with him for the past 20 Christmases.

Here are 5 things I’ve learned/had to learn/have become over the past 20 years since my Dad has been gone:

1.  I had to learn how to be completely independent.  My Sisters had their significant others and My Mom started dating pretty quickly after Dad passed.  I felt very alone.  I wouldn’t be who I am today, had my Dad not passed away 20 years ago.  I didn’t start dating Jonathan until 2 months before the 10th Anniversary of my Dad’s passing.

2.  I’ve become a much stronger Woman, not having a Father figure in my life for 20 years and being completely single for 10 years after Dad died.

3.  I’ve learned how to problem solve and take action because I was alone for so long and My Dad was in Heaven.

4.  I financially supported myself during college and worked full time until May/August of 2017.  I got Married in 2011.

5.  I’ve learned that Life is Tough, but God is Faithful.

I will miss Him till the day I die (although I’m thankful God spared my life on December 3rd, 2019)!

I’m so very Thankful for My Husband and Our Dogs!

Surprisingly, I’ve been more in the Christmas Spirit this Year than I’ve EVER been! :-) This will be my 21st Christmas without You! No one ever has or ever could replace You, but I’m Happy and Blessed and I know that “I can only imagine” the Joy you’ve been experiencing for the past 20 years!

I Love You Dad!

Jen Jen

Saturday, December 8, 2018

To Live is to Love. To Grieve is to Love. It's All About Love!

It's All About LOVE!

"A time to cry and a time to laugh.  A time to grieve and a time to dance." ~Ecclesiastes 3:8 NLT

"Though he brings grief, he also shows compassion because of the greatness of his unfailing love." ~Lamentations 3:32 NLT

"O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting? ~1 Corinthians 15:55 NLT

"He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others.  When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us." ~2 Corinthians 1:4 NLT

  To Say December 8th doesn't affect me would be lying!  I pride myself on being as "REAL" as I know how to be!  I can't stand fake people and fake happiness!  It wouldn't be normal if I wrote a blog saying "YAY!  It's December 8th!  My Dad died 19 Years Ago Today and I'm So Happy!  He Didn't get to meet My Husband and I'm So Glad He wasn't here to Walk me Down the Aisle when I got Married!  Let's Party!"  Seriously?  Who does that?  No one I know, who had any semblance of a Relationship with Their Earthly Father! 

December 8th sucks for me!  It really and truly does!  My Life changed forever that day!  I was 25 Years Young, and Single.  Most of My Friends were losing their Grandparents, not their Parents.  I was living alone in an Apt in Cudahy WI at the time and I would cry for hours and write out my Feelings, and cry some more, and listen to Christian songs about Heaven, and cry some more.  You get the point!  I even joined AOL Chat Rooms on the Loss of a Father/Loss of a Parent. I wanted to talk to others who understood some aspect of what losing a Dad was like.  To this Day, I'm still Friends with my Friend Melani!  She lost her Dad in Sept or Oct of the Same Year.  Can You believe we have never met in Person, but 19 years of Online Friendship came about because of losing our Dads.  She lives in San Antonio, TX and I REALLY want to meet her in Person one day! 

This Christmas will be the 20th Christmas without my Dad here on this Earth!  So many great memories have been made without him. Eight Years Ago, on December 10th, 2010, my now Husband, Jonathan, asked me to Marry Him.  Thanks for adding some Love and Happiness and Joy to my Dark December, Babes! :-) 

My Dad wasn't perfect by any means, and I know that for quite some time after his passing, I glorified him.  It's easy to glorify the dead.  To make it seem that you lost a perfect person.  I'm not perfect and he wasn't either.  We both said/did things to hurt one another.  That's life.  But, to Live is to Love!  To Grieve is to Love too!  I loved him, and I grieve the many years he's missed of my Life.  Yes, he would have been 78 Years Old this Year.  He had just turned 59 when he passed away.

I know he is in Heaven.  I wouldn't wish him back for anything.  He is enjoying eternal bliss with Jesus and other loved ones that have gone before us. He no longer experiences crying or pain or death or car problems! LOL  Those who knew him know what I mean by the car problems thing.  I truly believe his passing made me a stronger person.  I may suffer from depression, and I may cry, but God has made me strong!  I am there to support my Friends and Family when they lose loved ones.  That is what God wants me to do.

The other day I was googling how to handle the anniversary of a loved one's death.  One of the things I read, was to watch a TV Show or Movie that they like to watch.  The first thing that popped into my head was "Herbie The Love Bug"?  Ok, I'm dating myself here!  Herbie The Love Bug was a set of 3 or 4 movies that I had no idea were even old when we watched them as kids on TV.  My Dad's Name was Herbert/Herb/Herbie!  I remember us watching those movies as a Family.  I didn't remember much about the movies, except for they were about a VW Bug and they had the name Herbie in them.  So, Yesterday I told Jonathan that Today I wanted to watch one or 2 of those Movies. So, we did.  After I did a delivery for my Business, we watched "The Love Bug".  That was the 1st Movie in the series and it was actually made in 1969!  This was before I was born!  The next one was called "Herbie Rides Again".  That one was made in 1974 (the year of my birth).  We only had time to watch the 1st one, but I was proud of myself for doing something fun to memorialize my Dad.  That's the first time I've ever done something like this.  Many thanks to Jonathan for watching the Movie with me.  It was a bit corny, but it was a part of my Childhood, and a part of Jonathan's Childhood too.  Maybe I will watch the 2nd one Tomorrow?  I did laugh a bit! :-)

So I've done my Grieving for Today, and also remembering and laughing a bit too.  But, it's ok if I grieve later today too.  There is no wrong or right way to grieve or to handle the Anniversary of a loved ones death.  If you ever want to talk to me about the passing/loss of your loved one, I'm here for you! 

Now it's time to Live for Today, in these precious moments we are given.  My Husband and I are heading to Dinner soon to Celebrate our 8th Year Engagiversary!  Yes!  We are Old!  We are going to eat around 5pm!  Then we are going to see a Movie (which we never do) at 7pm!  We are pretty frugal when it comes to Entertainment.  We prefer to spend it on Vacations instead.  Plus, rarely do we agree on Movies to see, and it's hard for me to pay attention to Movies at home.  So, Jonathan usually goes to see Movies with a guy Friend.

Pic Taken The Evening We Got Engaged - 12/10/10.

It's ALL About Love People!  Let's stop the hate and the bigotry please!  Let's be nice to each other, no matter if they share our political views, or our view of life, or whatever the argument happens to be over!  Life is Short!  To Grieve is to Love.  To Live is to Love!  So, let's Love with all we have! 

Life is Tough, but God is Faithful!

Happy Heavenly Anniversary Dad!  I Love and Miss You!

Jen Jen (no one else is allowed to call me this, not even Jonathan)