Ah, dear friends, here’s the next part of the story.
I talked yesterday about my mom and praying. What I didn’t know then was that I would watch her on Monday afternoon lean over her husband and pray. As her husband, my dad, was taking his last breaths, she thanked God for his life. For their years together. For his goodness to her.
I’ll be taking the next few days off. We have a funeral on Thursday and a burial on Saturday and I will be looking for words for both of those. And doing a lot of driving.
I also understand the risk of publishing too many thoughts in the middle of grieving. C.S. Lewis’ A Grief Observed is a powerful reflection on the process, but it was written and edited and published as a whole. I think, perhaps, I will follow that model. Even social media chaplains probably should keep some things private for awhile.
I will say this, however. Every time we left Illinois for our various homes in Indiana for the last twenty-six years, Dad would say, “Call us when you get home.” It was one of those things that you know is love but feels like checking on. But I always called. Because I knew that he was following the route in his head, keeping his eye on the clock.
There were lots of things that way with my dad. I chafed a bit at the requests (“check the oil” “did you call your friend” “you are always welcome” “haven’t heard from you and we were just wondering if you are okay”) but I tried to remember it really meant, “I love you.” Because he did.
We made it home tonight. I’m telling you because I can’t call him.
But it’s okay.
He’s home, too.