Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Our Sweet Dad

My Dad, one time, pointed out the cardinals at the window feeder just out his living room window.  "See how the male takes the sunflower seed?  He cracks it, and then he feeds the female the seed inside."  I was transfixed for some time; I never knew that cardinals did this - the mate feeding the mate.  What a sweet thing.  He and I talked about eagles, and how they both protected the nest of eggs, setting on them, turning them, warming them, until they hatched - and then, taking turns bringing food to them: fish, or other.  Again: what a sweet thing.

Nature's way, and the way God intended.

Swans mate for life.  Even black vultures do.  Too, wolves and albatross.  Turtle doves are smitten for life.  Our nation's emblem, the bald eagle, is sort of the "till death do we part" kind of lover.  I don't have an answer as to why all these beautiful creatures feel the peace to hang, life-long, with their partners.  But they do.

My Mom and Dad mated for life.  Yes, they did.  Thick and thin.  In sickness (very little), in health (really blessed in that department), for richer, for poorer (they had some of those "trying" years), to love and to cherish (they did certainly love, and they really, really cherished each other's company, love, humor, wit, art, music, travels, sports, {and even us five children}.)

The stinging part of this post is what comes next - that which has made me cry, yet again:

"...from this day forward, until death do us part."

My sweet father ran a 5K last fall, at age 88.  He was first in his age group!  Because he was the only one in his age group.

The next week, he was diagnosed with terminal cancer.  We, his wife of 67 years and his kids, rallied around him as he soldiered on jauntily through the months at hand.  Last week, our sweet Dad passed on to what we all believe is the Peace Which Passeth all Understanding.  He is at peace, and we all are, too.

This is not to say that we do not grieve.  Sweet Dad was our patriarch, and even through his last week, we stopped each day to go tell him of our family activities - the tennis, the triathlon, the family breakfasts and dinners.  We rejoiced in his comments, some of which were humorous, some of which were mono-syllabic-yet comprehensible...

And then, there was an abbreviated coma, and a swift passing to the Peace to which I alluded, above.

Our sweet Dad.

* * *  Our sweet Mom will continue living in their home of 57 years. * * *


Gillian said...

What a wonderful family we have.

twebsterarmstrong said...

It is, it is.
And doubly wonderful that we all can embrace it.
Thanks be to God.

Debbie M. said...

This is a lovely story. I really enjoyed hearing more about your family. You are fortunate to have had your father for so much of your life.

Lisa said...

I am so sorry for your loss but rejoice with you in the memories of a wonderful family due so much to him.

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