Family Happenings Personal Thoughts

Through All of It

I open my dashboard and stare at the blank screen.

Then I close it.

The process repeats every few weeks.

Writing has always been “it” for me.  I’ve kept some kind of journal for as long as I can remember.  I wrote online before “blog” was even a word.  But now it’s hard not to focus on the one person who won’t read here.  Everything has changed since I first wrote in this space over 7 years ago.  I have changed.

Writing has always been my creative outlet.  Even as a kid, if I had a pencil and some paper everything was well.  My husband laughs at me because in any store, I always have to check out the pens and notebooks.  There are random notebooks filled with pieces of my heart, boring notes, and a lot of undone to-do lists all over our home.

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As much as I love pen and paper, something pulls me back to the space.  I love the simplicity of letting my fingers type away and then inserting photos of the kids.  But it’s hard and I rarely even attempt it any more because even on my best days, I know when I begin writing here, the tears will come.  Because my dad isn’t going to read it.  He isn’t going to call me up tell me how much he loved my words or that the newest picture of Bryson on my Instagram page is his favorite ever.  He said that often- he had many “favorite” pictures of Bryson.  I’m not going to hear the crack in his voice as he tears up and tell me (again) how proud he is of me.

So I sit here with tears streaming down my face- hoping my self-tanner isn’t streaking too badly- and I miss him. I know that if I ever want to come back to this place and document memories of my children I’m going to have to work through the missing him.  I’m going to have to open the page and allow my fingers and tears to flow freely until I am one day able to write without crying.

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I am actually doing well.  I no longer cry every day.  It’s just that this space is the one space I haven’t forced myself to face since he left.  Even the posts I wrote back in December- those were typed on my iPad and then pasted here because I couldn’t look at this screen.  I know that I am finally stable enough to face this screen and share my heart even if the one person who always read isn’t here to do so anymore.

Over the last 6 months or so I’ve tried to find other creative outlets- the planner community, bible journaling, and home decorating.  I haven’t picked up my camera in a while but as spring is here, I will dust it off soon.  I’ve enjoyed all of these new-to-me forms of creativity but none of them come easily like writing.

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Last week was our second Easter without him and it was so much better than the first.  I have modern medicine, self care, and the love and encouragement of my family to thank for that.  My dad’s sister, Chris, had a family get-together Sunday that was so good for my soul.  Three years ago on Easter we announced that we were expecting our third child.  Truly that feels like a lifetime ago.  Our lives have changed so much since then and I am a completely different person.  We are a different family.  We have loved and we have lost.  As the song goes- “You have been my God through all of it.”

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Justin and I have given it everything we had to make it through the last several years.  From buying groceries with a credit card because we were so broke to watching our baby undergo surgery after surgery to watching my dad fight small cell lung cancer and pass away, it’s been excruciating but I feel like we are finally coming out on the other side.  There is no one else in this world I would have wanted to face those things with, no one else who could have loved me through those things the way my husband has and continues to.  We could have allowed our circumstances to tear us apart but instead we used them to bring us together.  I look at my husband in a totally different light than I did on December 6, 2013- the day before Brynlee was born.  He was an amazing dad before her, but watching him love and care for her when she was so sick made me love him even more.  For months after my dad passed away, I was barely functioning and he held our entire family together.  I missed ball games and church, I couldn’t get out of bed some days, but there he was on the ball field helping coach and getting three kids ready for church on Sunday morning.  I watched him walk away from his job because his boss did not understand that parenting a trach baby and traveling to appointments required two people at all times.  We didn’t have nursing and there was no one to help- it was just us.  Then I watched him make a name for himself and build a booming business out of nothing.  His dedication to his family, to being our provider, and to building his drywall business took us from barely getting by to being able to remodel and add on to our home on a cash-only budget in less than 2 years.  I don’t say these things to brag- this is just our story.  I can’t even imagine how proud my dad would be of him.

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I know I am all over the place.  Maybe I just needed to write those first words and maybe I will be able to begin sharing about our family and documenting our life here again. T-ball and baseball practices have begun and soon the season will be in full swing. We are hoping to finish our kitchen/living room remodel this month and our entire exterior overhaul this summer. We are looking forward to taking the kids fishing, traveling as a family, and maybe even going camping. I’m looking forward to this year in a way that I haven’t in a long, long time.

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Through All of It

There are days I’ve taken more than I can give
And there are choices that I made
That I wouldn’t make again
I’ve had my share of laughter
Of tears and troubled times
This is has been the story of my life

I have won and I have lost
I got it right sometimes
But sometimes I did not
Life’s been a journey
I’ve seen joy, I’ve seen regret
Oh and You have been my God
Through all of it

You were there when it all came down on me
And I was blinded by my fear
And I struggled to believe
But in those unclear moments
You were the one keeping me strong
This is how my story’s always gone

I have won and I have lost
I got it right sometimes
But sometimes I did not
Life’s been a journey
I’ve seen joy, I’ve seen regret
Oh and You have been my God
Through all of it
Through all of it

And this is who You are
More constant than the stars up in the sky
All these years of our lives
I, I look back and I see You
Right now I still do
And I’m always going to

I have won and I have lost
I got it right sometimes
But sometimes I did not
Life’s been a journey
I’ve seen joy
I’ve seen regret
Oh and You have been my God
Through all of it
Oh and You have been my God
Through all of it
Oh and You have been my God
Through all of it

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  • Dearest Whitney,
    Your Dad would be proud of Justin, and he would be very proud of you for having the strength to continue to share your story and touch other people’s lives. I think that is one reason he was proud of your blog. I am sure he realized that your words meant a lot to others besides him. His love still lives in your heart and I would like to believe that somewhere, in the heavens above, his soul hears you as you pour your soul into these blog posts. That being the case, he will know the words that you write from your heart. I hope that knowledge would bring a little comfort to you as you continue to share the story of your life. Wishing you strength and peace as you continue your journey with a heartache that will never heal. Sending hugs and love always <3

 






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