For You, When You Miss Me During the Holidays (Dad Version)

November 23, 2023

For You, When You Miss Me During the Holidays…

You miss me fiercely. I can see it from where I am. It’s such a bittersweet honor to be missed with an intensity like the one you hold. It shows that I loved you well, but also that you’re hurting.

I see the space you’ve reserved for me– a chair left in my honor. A small remembrance and memorial of myself and my legacy. You remember me beautifully.

And while the chair is left empty, I know you don’t need to look at it to see the empty space that I left, you feel it, always. I know because I once had that same vacant spot when I lost my father and had to continue on without him. It always felt like something was missing because it was. I recognize your ache and your grief. It was once mine too.

But what I didn’t know then, and what you can’t know quite yet, is that the chair may be empty but the space that surrounds you is not. I am here in each and every thing you do. My spirit, my love, my influence, is all around you. My hope is that you feel it.

That you’ll recognize the signs I send to show that I’m still near. That you’ll embrace the joy and find the light, even when you feel swallowed by grief’s darkness. That you’ll honor my legacy with the same efforts that you honor your pain. That you’ll find joy and happiness, even while holding longing. That you’ll use both gratitude and memories to defuse grief’s powerhold on your future days. That you’ll allow yourself to both mourn and also move forward, into the beautiful life that remains. 

It won’t be easy, but it’s my hope for you. A father still holds hope for his daughter, even from heaven. I bet you didn’t know that, but it’s true.

My wish and my prayer is that you will live, not hopelessly and heartbroken, but with a fierce pursuit of contentment. To continue forward knowing that my love moves with you. To flourish and thrive, not just survive. 

And the twinkle of the lights might both sting and make you smile. That is ok.

And the holiday cheer and hustle might both hurt and help. That is ok.

And the traditions might change or shift, but don’t let them stop. Make things your own, just like I made them mine. Take my fatherly magic and tradition and make it yours. That was always the plan– for you to continue my heart’s work. For you to continue the love and the connections.

So when you miss me during the holidays, know that I’m here. I’m simply in a capacity that you cannot see nor understand. And it’s beautiful, just like you. And it’s bittersweet, just like the way life planned it to be. 

And I’m here. 

Always. 

Forever.

All around. 

Happy holidays from heaven.

xox, Dad

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Chelsea

Chelsea

A wife, mother and educator who has Indiana roots and a passionate spirit. Chelsea is a sappy romantic, coffee junkie, book collector, and person who wears her heart on her sleeve. She’s sarcastic, full of jokes, full of tears, and enjoys writing most when life gets messy or complicated. In 2017, Chelsea's mother passed away. Through her grief journey, she decided to take her mother’s advice and share her writing with the world. One day she gained the courage to honor her mother's wishes and write. It turned out to be one of the best decisions she's ever made.

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