It seems there are some things that happen in this life that we will never fully comprehend. Some things that don't seem at all fair and some things that tear our hearts apart.
Friday, September 9, 2011 our family experienced a loss that will forever leave an emptiness in our hearts. My dad took his own life that day. I wanted to share this experience in hopes that perhaps someone reading this, that maybe knows someone that needs help, will be able to recognize that and hopefully get that help!
I have so many fond memories of my dad. So many that make me laugh out loud. There are also some that make me sad. As many of you read this, you may recall 2 years ago, when we almost lost him. Some of you may even know how I've struggled, personally, with the fact that I grew up with a dad that was addicted to prescription drugs and at times, alcohol.
On Friday, when I got the phone call from my sister, I never knew it was possible to feel that much pain! I had just arrived in Idaho and my sweet mother-in-law put me in the car and started driving me back home. I felt as though I was in a tunnel and I don't remember much about the ride home, except that it felt like the longest trip EVER! From that dark and sad night until now has been a blur of tears and heartache. Everything seemed to happen so fast and I couldn't seem to grasp it all. Like trying to hold water in my hands, I couldn't seem to keep it from happening.
I do know that the only way that I could have made it through it all is with my amazing family and friends!! I have the best siblings in the whole entire world! I know that the Lord hand picked us for this life and to help each other carry this burden. We have shed many tears together, been a shoulder to cry on for each other, made each other laugh and helped hold one another up when it felt like there was no way to stand on our own. There were many times that we would just sit together and tell funny stories about dad and laugh. What a strength they have been in my life! We had to make a lot of tough decisions very quickly this week and also say goodbye to a very amazing man!
On Wednesday, September 14, 2011, we had a viewing for my dad. I was so overwhelmed and touched by the many, many amazing people that came to support my family and say goodbye to my dad. He touched so many lives while he was here on earth and it was truly an amazing experience to see so many lined up out the door to pay their respects.
I was dreading Thursday, September 15, 2011 because I knew it would all be over and I'd have to say goodbye to the man that taught me so much as a little girl and who helped make me the person that I am today! As I got up that morning and got ready, I felt as though I couldn't make it. I was brought to my knees to ask for the help that I desperately needed. What a beautiful day it was! There are 6 kids in my family and each of us took some time to talk about my dad. What an amazing spirit filled the chapel that day. There was laughter, there were tears and there was comfort knowing that we'd see him again one day. My siblings did such a good job. We had the most amazing home teacher, growing up. He is now the Stake Patriarch in my parent's ward. He has seen our family through so much and it was an honor to have him speak at my dad's funeral. He offered such kind words of comfort and peace. I was truly humbled standing up there and looking out at all the friends and loved ones that came out to share that day with us!
The graveside service was beautiful. A very dear family friend dedicated the grave. There was such an overwhelming spirit of peace there. The weather was gorgeous and we laughed at how dad would have wanted it that way.
My dad was a kind-hearted and loving man! He taught me how to fish. He taught me to love "Lord of the Rings". He taught me about good music like "Cat Stevens" and "Led Zepplin". He loved his family and especially his grandkids. They were his pride and joy! And they loved him! He could catch the biggest fish that I've ever seen! He had the best sense of humor and instilled that in all of us Lloyd kids!
Now that it's all over, I'm left sitting here, wondering what to do next? How do I make this ache in my heart not hurt so bad? How do I teach my little girl about papa so that she really, fully grasps how amazing he was? What do I tell her when she says "Mommy, I miss Papa a lot! Because I yub him so much!" How do I keep moving forward without forgetting about what his laugh sounded like and about what his hugs felt like?
I pray that his soul is finally at peace. I pray also that my family and I will be able to find peace in our hearts. He will be missed so much by so many!
Be at peace daddy! I will miss you so much! Watch over us and stay close by.
. . . . til we meet again.
Steven Merlyn Lloyd
Steven Merlyn Lloyd
If you know someone that is struggling with drug addiction or someone that is struggling with co-dependency, there are resources out there!! There are many that have helped our family. The LDS church has an "Addiction Recovery Program" that has support groups for addicts and for spouses, family and friends of addicts. You don't need to go through it alone.