'In Case I'm Not Around'
By country artist Scott Coner
I understand a little bit better these days that I have to let you both go. I know that those days are racing towards me, and I can’t hold you back from life. I wouldn’t hold you back even if I could. I grow prouder each and every day of the wonderful women you both are becoming, and I can’t wait for you to take your part of this world. But, it still hurts and I would be lying if I said otherwise.
Lately, nearly every night I wake up with this incredible empty feeling. I worry that maybe I have let something pass by. I worry that I could do better as a father, and I feel an urgency to load every day with activity and more opportunity to be around you. I will never be able to put into words how much I love you both, and one of my greatest fears is that something could happen to me and I won’t be there for you.
Life really does go by much quicker as we get older, and I am not kidding. I remember as a kid, a day at school seemed to go on forever and those hot days of summer didn’t have an end. I can still smell the grassy field behind my house as me and my dog Fuji, would walk around aimlessly in the wide, open space. I hope both of you have found those moments here at our home. Those are the times that we learn how to dream and see ourselves as we truly are in a future that is just around life’s corner.
Now, as you read this book, read it slowly, and understand that this is your life we are considering here. I wish so much, that when I was your age, I would have considered a few things. Maybe, thought through some consequences. But, the truly exciting thing is, both of you are at your own starting line and the race is just about to start! Pace yourself and breathe deep!
As we have watched you grow, you have given your mother and I joy that is very hard to describe. We have both loved you so much that it has been scary sometimes. So when I look back at my own life, I have many questions, and I suppose those questions will just have to be unanswered. You see, when I was a kid, your grandpa, my dad, had a vision for success. Our family had to pay a price for dad to get ahead and pursue a business in the electrical trade. It was also the mid-seventies, and parenting, for whatever reason was different back then in small towns. Because of that atmosphere, I didn’t do well in school. I didn’t believe in myself, and I felt like a loser by the time I was a teenager. As I look back on those years, I find it hard to believe that my teachers didn’t
know I was in trouble with my young life, but somehow I slipped through the cracks, and no one seemed to care. It took a very long time for me to become the man that I am today. I had to work through a lot of anger, and find myself deep inside of a shell that I had become. Those years are all far behind me now, and I only know that I want to continue to grow as a man, as your dad, and as a Christian. Now, you have heard your whole life how important it is to have faith. I truly want you to examine your heart, and take careful measure of how you truly feel. I found my own faith when I was pretty close to the bottom, and believe me, when you are at the end of your rope it isn’t hard to call out to Jesus. So far, thank God, you haven’t had to feel much in the way of true heartache. But do to this, you haven’t needed to apply your belief and trust in the Lord. This is not a bad thing! But, all I am saying is I need you to be very cautious with you heart. When you have spent your entire young life surrounded with love and adoration, the outside world may be a pretty traumatic place to be.
There are people in the world that are very unhappy, and often times it seems that the only thing that brings them any joy at all, is to hurt the people around them. I don’t want you to think I am recommending that you cut these people completely out of your life, I am simply saying to be careful and don’t believe the lies.
As badly as I hate to admit it, I have been one of those unhappy, unpleasant, people. Because I have, at one time, been spiritually empty, I have hurt other people. I have said things that have been completely unnecessary, just because I felt like lashing out. I can also tell you that I truly wish there was a way I could journey back through time and apologize for many of the hurtful things I have said. My hope is that these people realized that I wasn’t being rational and that I was behaving like a fool.
The work that Jesus did for us as he became a man and walked amongst us is truly mind blowing when you get down to it. Just to know that he understands our feelings and our temptations is very comforting. Society has turned us so far away from what we should be seeking that it is at times, pretty confusing. But when you are alone and seeking solace, please know that Christ understands you, he wants to be in your heart, and he loves you unconditionally. If you can take these simple truths and apply them to your heart daily, your world will be more whole and smooth. But there will be bumps! So, always be prepared.
I also want you to know that no matter how bad things get, no matter how far away you feel, you can always come home as long as I am alive. I tell you, things can get out of hand, and sometimes, you just need to go back to the house and sit on the porch for a while. In my own life, many problems have come my way. If I allowed myself to see, I have found the answer was in front of me the whole time. I just needed to slow down a little, pray, have a cup of coffee, and consider the source of my problem at hand. I promise I will try hard not to tell you what to do. I simply want to be here for you and make sure you know you are loved....
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