It's been 15 years today since my dad passed away. I blogged several years ago about how I've seen God's hand on August 18 over the years. It's a day that always comes with a mix of emotions. There's so much newness in August. He died the first week of my Freshman year in High School. So every school year the beginning falls right around the anniversary of the day he died. In some ways it's nice to be out of school and not have that part of the reminder.
David and I are sharing our story (both individually and as a couple) tomorrow at our Community Group so I've been thinking a lot about how God has worked in my life. And my dad's story is a huge part of that. God taught me a lot in the time my dad was sick and he has taught me a lot in the 15 years since then.
I realized recently that at some point in the last year I hit the mark where I have lived more of my life without my dad than with him. I was 14 when he died. One of the things that's always hard when someone dies is thinking about all of the things they won't experience with us here. It's crazy to think how much of that I've walked through... graduations, learning to drive, moving to college, starting a career, getting married, buying a house, meeting my niece and nephew, and all of the little everyday things in between.
Since I wrote about this 6 years ago there have been a lot more good days than bad. I've continued to see God's faithfulness in my life and in our family. God's walked with our family through weddings, babies, another cancer diagnosis, losing my grandpa. He continues to remind me that He is Lord of All. That He holds every tear. That He holds every praise. That He never lets us walk alone.
And the more time that passes, the more I appreciate the time I had with my dad instead of being angry that he was taken so soon. I cherish all of our memories together and am able to remember the good and let the bad fall away.
After my grandfather passed away, my mom and Aunts went through all of the pictures he had. My mom brought back a bunch of pictures from my grandparents' collection and it was fun to go through them with my brothers and show them to Aja and David (and Chase who had fun trying to guess who everyone was in the pictures of us as kids).
As I walk down this memory lane, here's a few pictures I've gotten over the last months that I'm enjoying reminiscing over...