Wednesday, December 02, 2015


I came across this picture yesterday. We were sitting in Huntington airport waiting for our plane to Florida. I wish we were taking a Florida vacation again, all together, all six of us. I wish I was sitting anywhere, doing anything with that man at my side.

It has been almost four months, and in many ways we have found a new daily routine. Occasionally, in the middle of this routine, disbelief will work its way through to the surface. I still can't believe he is actually gone. He was far too young. Besides melanoma, he was the picture of health. I think I could count on my hands the number of days he missed work before cancer. It isn't fair to the kids. It isn't fair to me.

Other times in the midst of our daily activities the smallest things will set the tears flowing. Yesterday, it was this picture. I don't even remember why I was looking through pictures. There were tons of pictures with Tim, but this one made me cry. A few weeks ago, it was grilled cheese that started the crying.

It was one of the first really cold days of fall. Grilled cheese and tomato soup is one of our favorite cold weather meals, and it was on the dinner menu. Tim loved grilled cheese. He loved to pick the little crispy bits of cheese that would fall onto the griddle. That evening there was no one picking while I cooked. That started the emotions, but when I realized I'd made too many sandwiches, the tears began to flow.

Our griddle makes six at time. I loaded that griddle up twice, just like I've done a hundred times before. But we aren't six anymore. We are five. There is always an empty space at the table, and I don't need to fill the griddle twice when I make grilled cheese.

I convinced myself that the holidays wouldn't be too bad. We never made a huge deal about things like that. Our traditions were loose and somewhat fluid. Yet, several days before Thanksgiving heaviness and sensitivity began to settle. It is still here. I imagine it will stay through the holidays. I imagine it will be with us in varying degrees at varying times forever, but it is ok. It is part of the process. We suffered a great loss. He was a great man. He is gone, but will always be part of us. We still have joy. We still have peace. We still have hope.

This I recall to my mind, therefore I have hope. Through the Lord's mercies we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not. They are new every morning; Great is Your faithfulness. "The Lord is my portion," says my soul, "therefore I hope in Him!" The Lord is good to those who wait for Him, to the soul who seeks Him. It is good that one should hope and wait quietly for the salvation of the Lord. ~ Lamentaions 3:21-26


  1. Love and light to you all! Thank you so much for sharing, Stephanie.
    (This is Chad from MSF)

  2. Thanks for sharing your heart, and God's heart, much Love.

  3. Thanks for sharing Stephanie. I should be working, but I felt compelled to read your post and I'm glad I are a reminder to not sweat the small stuff, life is too precious to waste on it! Praying for your family. Kristi Ruggles

  4. He will always be with celebration and in mundane. That is love. That is honoring the heart. It's okay. One day, you will have all the same experiences and there will be no urge to cry, just the acknowledgement that you miss him, you love him, you need him. That will come.

  5. Your strength and courage is an inspiration to many. We don't understand events in our lives....we question why? But you are right we have hope and our trust and faith in God. I'm praying that God will wrap his arms around you and keep your family in the center of his hands comforting you.