This day every year gives me pause. In 1968, I was a little girl and I got up in the morning to tell my daddy good-bye before he left for work. That was the last time I ever saw him. He died later that night on a dark, lonely road near Simi Valley, CA. His funeral was on December 24th. That event, of course, changed my life forever.
I often wonder what might have been. Would we have stayed in Santa Barbara? Would my parents have had more children? Would they both still be alive today enjoying their grandchildren? Would I have found the gospel?
I don't know the answers to these questions. What I do know is that I have the gospel in my life. I feel so blessed each day to know that my Redeemer lives, and because He lives, so does my father. And my mother. My grandparents. Friends. I may not be able to see those that I've loved and lost with my mortal eyes, but they are not far from me. Some days, I've felt them so close I could almost reach out and touch them.
As I consider the tragic events as of late, especially at Sandy Hook Elementary School, my heart aches for all those who have lost loved ones to such violent acts. But I know that they can be reunited one day. I know that their loved ones are not gone forever. Because the Savior lives, so do their precious loved ones. And through the Savior, they can find some peace and some comfort.
I will never stop missing my father, or my family members that have died. There will always be a hole in my heart for each one, but I can feel comfort knowing that they are in a better place and that the bonds of family do not end with death. I don't think you ever get over losing a loved one, but with time you learn to live with it.
The Savior said in John 14:27, "Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid."
May we all find some peace and comfort, especially those in Connecticut.