This was written 10 years ago. As I read it again after resurrecting this blog, I decided to leave it, as it truly still speaks from my heart. Only a couple edits here and there and some additions but I did leave most of it as it was.
(At the time of this writing, it was 2 years from my father’s passing away.)
I felt compelled to write this, because I was at my mother’s house and happened to find the first love note that my father ever wrote to her. He must have been about 21or 22 years old, Mom was still in high school. I wish the written word could express what my heart felt as I read it. My parents had been married for about 55 years. Mom was devoted to his care to the end. I felt the rapid passing of years as I read that love note and thought of those I love and cherish, and hope and pray that they know the love in my heart.
My father’s passing away from us was a slow and sad experience. He was a highly intelligent man. He was an electrical engineer and his claim to fame is that he designed the motors for the soil sampler arm on the original Viking space craft to Mars, in the ‘70s. His name is up there on Mars to this day. But a few decades and strokes began to take him away from us. He slowly lost the ability to do everything that was fun to him, working in his work shop, even using his VCR and doing crossword puzzles. Eventually, he couldn’t communicate with us any more, couldn’t care for his simplest needs and could hardly feed himself. But he recognized us and he smiled and was able to say “I love you”. The last words I had for him, was to tell him that I love him. He looked pained and sad, like he wanted to respond but couldn’t, so I told him “And I know you love me too.” And his whole face relaxed into a smile and I prayed a sincere, tearful prayer, kissed him on the head and hugged his neck. About three hours later, my sister called to tell me that he had gone to be with Jesus. I was happy, because I was praying that God would bring him home, but my heart was broken, because I was already missing him for so long and our loss was finalized. My mother was devoted to his care to his last day. My heart ached horribly for her too. She was and is a strong, brave woman. We both talked of times when we broke down in tears thinking of my father. Mom would tell me not to cry when she goes … I just laugh at her … “yeah, right Mom. I’ll just go on my merry way and forget about you …. NOT!!!!”
This week is a week of mixed and muddled thoughts and emotions. My birthday hit this week (this was written in October 2007). It’s another year that I have to account for. Have I walked with God the way I should? Have I honored him and loved him with all my heart? Have I cherished my relationship with Him? How far have I gotten in my life’s goals, have I cherished and cultivated the skills and gifts God has given me?
Eight years later, on September 30, 2014, we received an emergency call from the care facility where my disabled brother lived. He was in the hospital, getting tests, MRIs, CAT scans etc. He had a brain tumor. During my birthday week, he had surgery to remove the bulk of the tumor. We wanted to give him a chance, we wanted to see if God would intervene and help him to live and overcome the tumor. On my birthday, we received the biopsy results, it was the worst type of tumor a brain could hold. On June 29, 2015, he climbed out of his disabled body, healthy and whole and moved on to his joyful and eternal rest, where we who love his Lord, will see him again. In spite of his inability to talk, sing or pray if we mentioned prayer or Jesus, his face would light up.
Why am I pestering you with these things directly from my heart? I just could not keep it to myself. I wanted to share this with you, because we all need to think about how well we cherish the good gifts God has given us. Please CHERISH THE ONES YOU LOVE!