Wednesday, May 19, 2021

Just Be His Daugther

In February I took care of my Dad for 5 nights and four days as he was preparing to take his final breath on earth. 

Despite the atypical relationship we had, it was an honor to care for him. His unresponsiveness did not deter me from having coffee with him, talking his ear off, or reading him the Bible.  

I have witnessed the transition from life to death before. It is complex, exhausting, and brings with it a dichotomy of feelings. 

The last 12 hours were the absolute hardest. I will spare you the details.

In those hours, I began to get angry. I started questioning G-d. 

I could not understand the purpose. I struggled to see G-d in the midst of that night.

While this side of heaven I may not grasp the purpose of those hours for my Dad, but I was given some clarity on the purpose for me. There were 4 words that I needed to hear. 

Having friends on the other side of the world has benefits. One of those friends reminded me that my night was his day if I needed to talk. 

In those last hours I needed to talk. 

My friend shared with me that when his father was sick, he was told that his job was to be his father's son. He gave me the same advice his Rabbi gave him, just be his daughter. 

In that moment those words helped me shift from being less caregiver to being more daughter. I was able to quit worrying so much about my Dad's vital signs or lack thereof and just wait. 

There were many other words shared between us that helped me get through that dark night, however, the bigger impact of those four little words, just be his daughter, came a few months later.

In April while walking with a friend, I realized that those four words may have been meant for that earthly moment, but G-d was using those words now to tell me to just be His daughter. 

Throughout March and April my brother and I read Not Forsaken by Louie Giglio. A book that I had started in 2019 but never finished. A book all about G-d being our Father. 

Being His daughter means I have His spiritual DNA. As Louie Giglio puts it, "This spiritual DNA brings new dimensions of structure for your character, for your coping mechanisms, for your patterned responses, new building blocks for your very soul."

Without those last 12 hours, I may not have heard the words, just be his daughter.

Those released me to be my biological Dad's daughter in his final hours on earth. 

They have grown and deepened the love and appreciation I have for the Dad that raised me. 

They have allowed me to operate less from my natural DNA and more from my spiritual DNA. 

I know life is hard. I know many of us wake up with heavy hearts. 

We don't have to live from that heavy place.

Just Be His Daughter.