Andy flies back into Dallas tonight, and I am so looking forward to picking him up at the airport.

Life has to continue at some point, and as hard as it is to pick up the pieces and start each day without someone you love, it needs to be done. Spandy Andy had to get back to spreading happiness, which involved a trip to Canada for the Kelowna Fan Xpo, and to Bahrain for the Formula 1 Racing event.

Spandy-Kimmy-Passports

Going to fill up my passport for my Daddy who can’t anymore. 

From day one, our relationship has been new, exciting and fun. The loss of my dad has been the biggest test in our relationship, add to that a traveling work schedule and long distance and it creates some pretty heavy stress levels. Part of dealing with loss, is dealing with new ways to interact and engage with those still in your life. When is it ok to smile, laugh and have fun? When is it ok to have a good time with your family, friends and fiancé?

High stress levels aren’t really my thing. We are working together to create an environment that is stress-free, relaxed and full of healthy emotions. Being unapologetic in your emotions, fears, highs and lows allows this grieving process to come naturally.

Kim-Stuart-Florida

My Daddy LOVED the beach. He belonged to the sun, sand and water. 

We are both having to realize and be aware of different emotions, and allow each other the time to move past them on our own. My strength gets me by everyday, putting difficulties into perspective gives me a big break in dealing with issues. I’ve been humbled to my core, and able to pick my battles easily. I had to come to the realization that my loss is different than Andy’s loss, and it is almost impossible for either of us to understand each others grief.

I am grieving for a lifetime of memories gone, a man that for 27 years guided and supported me. Andy is grieving for a man that gave him his blessing and raised me. Our memories are different of my dad, and therefore our grieving will be different. It’s taken me a bit to realize that, and I think being apart from each other has brought out a few emotions I wasn’t expecting.

Kim-Spandy-Andy

Exploring Dallas & feeling my Daddy all around us. 

I think because of this huge loss in my life, my perspective on things has drastically changed, and with that a bit of my personality has been shifted. Andy messaged me last night and said that he was reading The Five Love Languages. It literally made my heart soar when I heard that he was investing in our relationship in such a way that involved research and learning new things. We all receive and give love differently, and especially after this loss I feel like the way I give love and need it has shifted.

There is a hole in my heart that will never be filled. A spot that had my dad’s name on it has been torn and I don’t think any amount of love can fill it back up. But, I am lucky to be surrounded by a strong family, a fierce fiancé, and fabulous friends that know when to love, and when to smile and listen.

I wish I had more photos of my dad and I. More trips in our memory vault. More late night talks. More random walks that wound us up at cool bars with good people watching. Instead, I have a guy that tells me I remind him of my dad in my movements, mannerisms and looks. And wherever we go, whenever we take a photo, talk into the early morning hours or have a beer, my dad is with us. For now, that will have to do, and I am grateful.