On the day I found The Dress, I stopped short at my own reflection as two important facts overwhelmed me. I knew I was looking at the most beautiful, most perfect dress I’d ever seen. And the greatest man I’d ever known—my father—would never see me in it. His soul was far gone. So many blessings in my life, but I wasn’t gonna get that one.
I’m the oldest of three headstrong daughters. We were his house full of women with “loud voices and even louder opinions.” That’s what he always used to say. But I know we secretly made him proud when we used our voices and stood for what was right. You see, my father taught me how the world works. And I’ll never forget how he told me that no matter what happens, love was the greatest power of all. “Yes, daddy.”
“No, no,” he used to say. “When you finally fall in love, you’ll understand exactly what I mean.” But there I was…so in love I wanted to spend my life with someone, I had found the perfect husband, found the perfect Dress…and I was empty.
They say he never knew what happened when the car came at him from the other lane. They did all they knew to save him, but nothing could keep him with us. We all arrived to help Mom make the final decision, and it was there—in that hospital room—when we discovered something we never knew about him. Since learning how to drive, he had always been an organ donor.
“Because souls go to heaven,” he had told our mother. “My organs and body won’t.”