You know, a lot of people often complain about "in-laws." You hear all kinds of things that aren't flattering or positive and I can honestly say that I have never been able to relate to those stories. I have the most wonderful in-laws in the world. I've always thought that. Not just Trav's parents (who are some of the best people I know) but his siblings and their families too. I love them. I love spending time with them. I look up to them and do feel very blessed to be a part of their lives. I married the youngest son in the family and am 6 years younger than him so I am at a completely different stage of life than they are but I have so many good examples I can look up to, and fountains of wisdom I can draw from. I love being a Maughan. I am blessed to be a Maughan.
But this post isn't just about how great my in-laws are. This post is about my father in law. He passed away on Tuesday, July 29. Just writing these few sentences has already started the tears flowing but I'm hoping this will help me to heal, to write it all out, and to remember.
Rex was 82 years old when he died but has always been the youngest "old man" I have ever known. In fact, I never looked at him as an old man until he got sick about 4 months ago...maybe a little less than that. We visit both sets of parents almost every Sunday and to see the changes that have happened in the past few months have been staggering. He got very sick and was in the hospital for several weeks and was diagnosed with a brain tumor. A very bad one that can't be cured. But he got "better" and many thought it had to be a misdiagnosis. He was back to fishing, playing latter ball with the kids on Sunday night, gardening, and just being grandpa.
But we knew that this would be temporary and he would go downhill. We didn't know how much time we would have but we knew we didn't have years. So with a little perspective under our belts we got family pictures taken while he was still well. These pictures are just some of the many that we got of grandpa. I'm so glad we did and almost everyone was there (which in an of itself was a miracle.)
Here's their 6 kids with spouses.
Mom and Dad with kids.
All the grand kids.
Kids with spouses again.
Trav is the amazing man that he is because of his dad. I can see so many similarities in the two of them that I know that one of the reasons I loved Rex so much is because Trav was so much like him. I am honored to be married to a man like that. I'm honored to be in a family like that, and I'm honored to have been a part of Rex's life.
I love you Rex. We miss you, but I know that we will see you again someday.