I was 7 years old when my dad married my mom....back then he was called my 'step-father'. My mother and I came as a packaged deal and I always felt he loved me as much as he loved my mom. After they came home from their honeymoon we took up residence in a small, 1950's, 3 bedroom house that they had bought to start their new life together. My mother, ever the decorator, put her magical touch to it that made it feel 'homey' and warm.
From day one, Dad treated me as his own--complete with spankings when I miss-behaved! ;-)
For several years, turmoil ensued that I won't go into, but the blessing in all of that was my dad's constant, abiding peacefulness that had a calming effect. I could always count on his faithfulness and love to my mom and to me. Deep down I never doubted his love for me, or that he wanted the best for my life. I thrived on his encouragement and support.
He couldn't have been more pleased and proud when I married Steve. He knew that Steve was the man God had chosen for me, and he has told me over the years how thrilled he is that Steve is my husband--he knows what a great man that Steve is. As a mom of married children, I now know the extent of those feelings. There is a peace and a joy that comes from knowing your children chose great spouses!
When we moved back to Sacramento almost 3 years ago, one of the blessings was that we moved into the same town as my dad and his wife, Leilani. Soon Dad and I began the weekly tradition of meeting for coffee..usually on Thursdays at 9 am. How I cherished that time. He is my last link to my mom. He is my father, who I can confide in, trust, and know that his counsel is always wise. He's going to be 86 years old August 23. He's lived quite a life and has a lot of wisdom to pass on!
This coming Monday he and Leilani are moving to a retirement 'village' two hours away from here. Today my heart is heavy because we met for coffee for the very last time this morning. Change can be so difficult and I know that life is full of change and I know that I will accept the change and move on. But right now I'm sad.
These past 2 1/2 years with my dad has been such a gift and I am grateful.
Reverence for God gives a man deep strength; his children have a place of refuge and security.
Thanks for providing me a place of refuge and security, Dad. Thank you for showing Steve and I how to provide that for our own children. I love you!