“For everything you have lost, you have gained something else.”
December 8, 2012, Fulton, Kentucky: I heard my mother’s footsteps coming down the hall. “Charissa, it’s time.” I immediately got out of bed and followed her to my father’s bedside. We held his hands and tears poured down our faces.
“We love you, Daddy, ” we said.
“I love, honey, ” she said.
The words of my grandfather and grandmother rang loudest in a room filled with cries and tears: “You have been an incredible son. We love you. It’s ok. Go home.” And so my father passed away, peacefully, surrounded by love.
December 23, 2017, Henderson, Kentucky: William Finley “Finn” sat in my lap as we watched his favorite show on the TV monitor in his grandparents’ kitchen. Piper Rose was playing nearby. The last few weeks had been filled by a bit of turmoil: during the day, her father and I had pushed her to achieve her reading goal for the quarter whilst wrangling our individual careers. She hated it. By night, I had stressed and toiled over Christmas gifts for each of the children and sewed a Christmas program costume by hand. But more than that, there was the “turmoil” of a young and budding family. The ebb and flow and four people learning to live in harmony and peace with one another.