Just yesterday, I wrote about the death of our friend Gus. And, just yesterday, another kind, gentle man went home. Harry Doss was Daddy to my friend Cheryl. He was husband, friend and partner to Dolly. Heebee to some beautiful great-grandchildren. Friend to many.
When I called my mom to share the news, we both cried. Not for Harry. We knew that Harry was released, relieved of his worries and cares. We cried for Dolly, and for Cheryl. Mom knows the hard part of losing a life long partner. I know the hard part for a daughter who will miss her dad.
There are some years, for many of us, when our parents are healthy, our children are happy, and we roll along through life thinking it will always be so. Years when family gatherings are for baptisms, birthdays, weddings. When Christmas cards bear news of promotions and graduations, happy successes.
The hard times come for everyone. Because we lose people we love. And, no matter how much we want the easier times back again, grief changes us. It leaves a mark. Time eases the acute pain, but we will never be the same. I could repeat the common belief that we are stronger, better people because of the hard times. Personally, I would rather skip this part. The broken-hearted part.
I would rather call Cheryl and laugh about the antics of her grandkids. I would rather recall fun and funny times spent together. But the most helpful thing for me when my dad died was hearing from people who cared about my loss. And I care very much that Cheryl has lost her dad.
Harry is free. No more illness, no more hardship for Harry. So, I pray for Dolly, for Cheryl and all their family, that they may feel peace and solace, knowing that they were loved so well by a child of God gone home. Rest in peace, Harry. Well done, good and faithful servant.