My dad was my everything. He was my very best friend, my confidant, my Bible teacher, my hero, my first crush, my strength, my number one fan. One afternoon, he and I were texting back and forth about one of our favorite country music artists. As was so common with us, the conversation turned humorous, and the next thing I knew I was trying to text him through my belly laughs.
Two hours later, he was gone.
My dad, at the age of sixty-one, had a massive heart attack while sitting in his chair and watching his favorite cowboy show. The whole thing was over in almost an instant; he was gone before the paramedics arrived. No warning. No preparation. No red flags that said, “Hey, Stacie! Your dad is going to pass away soon, so get yourself emotionally ready, because it’s going to sucker punch the wind out of you.” There was none of that. One minute I had him, the next minute I didn’t.
That was back in 2013. Here I am, three years later, and I am not only stuck in my grief, but I am not progressing forward. Not even a little. This past Father’s Day passed for me exactly as the previous two had; going through the motions to make the day special for my husband, but inwardly feeling as though I was treading through thick mud and humid air. My body was too heavy to move and the air was too hard to breathe. And that is when it hit me: I might need some help, here.
When my dad passed away, I thought I could handle it on my own. I had grieved the loss of all four grandparents, who were very dear to me. I miscarried a little boy in 2010. And though I miss my grandparents and long for my little boy, I am okay. I processed their passing, I progressed through the mourning and grief, and am standing here today. But, I had my dad to help me through those hard times. This time, I didn’t have him. So, I finally admitted to myself that I need help. That might seem like a no-brainer to you, Friends. But it was like a light bulb for me. Kind of a face-palm-forehead-slap kind of moment. Enter in Grieving the Loss of a Loved One by Kathe Wunnenberg.
First off, this book is a daily devotional. Which at first, took me by surprise. I think I chose the book quickly, before I could change my mind, and expected it to be more of a self-help type book. But then, as I dove in, I was pleasantly surprised by the devotional aspect. Sometimes, at least for me, facing grief and loss head-0n is really really really hard to swallow. With this book being a daily devotional, everything is in bite-sized chunks. Which is not only easier to digest, but didn’t put me off from reading more. I also really love that the end of each day has a section for journaling. Each devotion deals with the process of grief, broken up by sections. (i.e. Denying, Venting, Questioning, Bargaining, Crying, Surrendering and so on) and uses examples from the Bible. Which, in my opinion, is awesome. The Bible truly does have everything we need; couple that with the slow walk through every aspect of mourning, and you have yourself one perfect companion for processing your loss.
I know that I have a lot of healing to do, but this book has really helped me to feel like I am standing on solid ground again. Which is such a beautiful, good feeling.
**I received this book from BookLook Bloggers in exchange for my honest review.