Tuesday, April 17, 2012


This is one of my favorite pictures of my dad in his younger years.  I think it is because of his curls, that bit of mischief behind his eyes, and of course that perfectly charming smile!  Or, maybe it is just because it is a picture of my dad.

I miss his smile, and his corny jokes.  I miss hearing his voice, especially when he would sing one of his favorite hymns, "Because He Lives".   And oddly enough, I miss the sight of the cowboy boots that he was seldom without.  He never did look quite right in a pair of sneakers!

Two years ago today, I was sitting by his bed at the nursing home trying to be a voice of comfort and support as he ended his journey on this side of eternity.  It was a most difficult day for this daughter.  Many guilt feelings plagued my heart and mind that day as I sat vigil there.  In the midst of the quiet and sadness, God brought me comfort through nurses and hospice volunteers that day.

My heart was lifted as one nurse after another came in to check on him.  Each one mentioned something specific about him that they had discovered in his 72 days in their care.  One of the nurses had discovered his enjoyment of country music, and had watched videos with him on occasion.  She had tuned the TV in his room to CMT that morning.  Another peaked in to say how much she enjoyed his feisty attitude with her.  They would air box one another in a playful manner; she said she would miss that.  Still another nurse came in to check on him before heading up to the third floor to start her shift.  She had come to work there about the same time Dad had moved in.  She had ordered him a book about Oklahoma through their library system - a very thoughtful gesture indeed.  She teared up as she leaned over to kiss him on the cheek, and said something to him about dancing.  I will be forever grateful for their gracious and compassionate care for him during his last days.  I couldn't be there, I am so thankful that they were.

So, today as I remember my dad, it is with mixed emotions of sadness and joy.  Though there are certainly things that I miss, and even that I regret, I live with the hope that I will see him again. (1 Thessalonians 4:13-17). When that day comes and we are united with our Savior and Lord, death behind us completely, I will hear him tell corny jokes, see him smile, hear him sing, and maybe even dance in his cowboy boots!

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