Experience is a Doorway, Not a Final Destination- Oswald Chambers

Monday, April 19

My Dad's Birthday

Today, April 19, was my father's birthday.

I didn't plan to be the sentimentally gushy one on this day but here I am- reliving the week he died and every day since. I can't (and refuse to) pretend that this day is as equally important to those of you who are reading this, but it lessens the load a bit, to know that I can share these thoughts with you.  That, at this moment, someone is thinking the same thoughts of my father that I am.

The first night my family was back in Indiana after dad's death, we looked through his nightstand and dresser to see all of the trinkets and papers that he had collected.

In his dresser we noticed a small tin that had been sealed with duct tape.  Upon opening the tin, we found a wad of dog hair that belonged to Bailey, our favorite dog. For those of you who don't know, Bailey died on New Years Eve last year.

Audra remembered a conversation with dad before he died, where he told her that if cloning becomes common in the future, we could clone Bailey using the dog hair that he saved.  Only my dad, Mr. Dreamer, would have thought to save dog hair.  I laugh every time I think about it.  

Below is a letter that I found in his nightstand. I had sent it to him on his birthday last year. When we buried him, I placed it in his casket and said goodbye. 


I have been thinking about you a lot over the past few weeks.

I am so blessed to have a father like you.  I think back to all the good memories I have of my childhood.  I remember when you would let us “raid” your truck- even when you knew we had been sneaking candy behind your back.  I remember how you dreamed about building the house in the country and how, because of you, we were able to grow up surrounded by space. 

I remember how you always practiced pitching with me.  You made it to every game and helped coach my softball team.  I remember your kisses and the red IU shorts you used to wear. 

I love you dad.  I am so grateful for your consistent presence in my life.  You gave your time and your energy.  When Lynn remarks that I do something that reminds him of you, I count it as a compliment.  So many children don’t have the privilege of having a father.  You are so much more than that.  You have impacted my life immensely.

Thank you Dad.  I love you.



Jenny C said...

I love this post. and especially the sweet picture. Happy birthday to your father.

Barbara said...

Allison, what a beautiful way to remember your Dad's birthday today. Thank you for sharing from your heart the love and respect you so clearly have for him. One thing we didn't know is that your Dad and Harry share the same birthday. We will never forget...love to you and your family.

Anonymous said...

well, i'm crying......mainly b/c not being in your shoes, i can only imagine when my day will come where i am thinking these same thoughts.

i love you girl and you are so brave and loving.

XO- Jenn

Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday to Chris Geiser. Al, your dad was a man that I looked up to as well. Although I have a wonderful father that I can say the same things about that you did to yours, I thought so highly of Chris as well. He was an awesome, godly man. I loved his "ruggedness" and I cannot nor will not get his amazing laugh out of my head. It makes me smile right now just to think about it! I love you, girl!

Rachel Ayele

Sandy said...

Happy Birthday, Chris! What a wonderful, Godly man who wasn't afraid to let his light shine for all of us to see. His love for your mom and you kids went beyond words and it showed! You've always reminded me of him, Allison. Thanks for sharing your heart today!


Anonymous said...

Allison, thanks for sharing your thoughts about your wonderful dad! He truly was a great man! I cried when I read this since I have experienced the same thing as you. Actually, my dad died away from home like your dad - on a vacation, suddenly and totally unexpectedly!! It's always hard - even though it's been years ago. But then, we never want to forget good dads like ours. Be thankful for the wonderful memories and the great reason for your tears. A good dad deserves to be missed - forever, well, until you see him again!!
Bless you, Alberta

Jen (sis-in-law) said...

Allison this is simply a beautiful rememberence of your dad!You are very blessed to have had such a wonderful father/male figure in your life! He will FOREVER live within you! You are a beautiful woman inside and out!

Love you, Jen

allisongraber said...

Thank you all for your comments and support. It has meant so much to my family. I love you all.