Magic outside the comfort zone f/6.3, 1/160 sec, ISO 200
With the theme, "magic" I also intended to share a photo of my girls, especially the magic in their smiles. They are just the most amazing girls and I am grateful everyday that I have the privilege of being their mom.
I was also going to share my husband's and my motto, "Believe in the magic," which we even have engraved in our wedding bands. Our motto came out of our love story (best friends for 5 years and then the realization that we were meant for each other) and getting engaged in Disneyland (a magical place for so many reasons) and getting married during Christmas time (the most wonderful and magical time of year in my book).
But then last night I came to appreciate the magic in an even deeper way. Yesterday evening, after work, I went to my dad's grave site. I had just visited over the weekend, but at that time his grave was still marked with a temporary marker. From the number of stones surrounding him on Father's Day, it looked like he'd be receiving his permanent gravestone soon. It's an hour drive to the cemetery, but I needed to visit. I wanted to see it, but I also feared seeing his gravestone. A lot of the time, I walk around in a cloud of disbelief and I worried a gravestone with my dad's name on it would shatter my protective bubble.
I arrived at the cemetery to find that he did receive his gravestone. It's beautiful, but so very sad. I still find myself waiting to wake up, hoping this is all a bad dream. But it's not a dream. I "talked" to my dad last night, because most of my cemetery visits have been with family and I've been too shy at this point (it is all so new). I let him know how much I love him and miss him. And as much as it hurts, I'm still continuing on, staying strong for me and my family. I then cried. And then cried some more. And then I looked up.
At that very moment, my eyes went straight to a gravestone near my dad. And even though the glare from the bright sunlight was making it difficult to read most of the gravestones, my eyes landed on the words, "I love you babe." And in that moment, I felt my dad with me. He would have said that. That was his term of endearment that he often used with me and my brother. That moment was absolute magic. Thank you, Dad.