Daddy’s Girl

Tom&JamieSsDear Tom,

I wish you were here.  I thought I wouldn’t miss you as much as time went by, but I was wrong.  Days like today I miss you more than ever.  In the 4 1/2 years since you left us here and went to your eternal home with Jesus, I have been privileged to watch our kids mature and make lives for themselves.

Chris is in Dallas with his family now and they have a new daughter who is so precious and looks like a cross between both of her siblings.  Jeffrey has married and has a baby who is at that “just about to walk” stage and is a such a cutie.  Bradley has moved and is sharing an apartment with friends, something I began to wonder if it would ever happen.  And Jamie, well. Jamie is getting married.

Tomorrow our baby daughter, our first born child, is getting married.  She has grown up into such a lovely woman–passionate about the things she believes in, generous, loving, and kind.  She has a lot of you in her.  She is bright, articulate, and loves organization and making lists, just like you used to do  And she is a Cardinals fan.  She is marrying someone who is absolutely perfect for her.  He complements her in so many ways.  He’s pretty laid back, a calm oasis for her in a sometimes hectic life.  He loves her and it shows in how he treats her.  She glows when they are together.  (It doesn’t hurt that we love his family, too!)

She asked me to walk her down the aisle.  I am so afraid I will cry the entire way, because it should have been you doing this task.  But I will take what life has given me and do the best I can with it.  I will place her hand in Jim’s, knowing he is a good man who will love and cherish her.  It is  going to be a lovely wedding and we will all celebrate, but we will all miss you.  Your corny jokes, your infectious laughter, and your daddy-daughter dance.  We will miss them all.

I know how much you loved your little girl and she loved you back just as much.  I remember how you took her to Jefferson City all by yourself when she was just 3 months old.  She followed your footsteps in the garden as a toddler, and called you when she was lost when she first started driving.

I know that you would never trade being in the presence of God, but I can’t help but think that while we are smiling and celebrating down here, you will be doing the same in heaven.  Love you forever, Linda

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