Thursday, October 22, 2015

Dear Mom...

Dear Mom,

It’s hard to believe that it’s already been a year since your beloved husband and our adored daddy passed away. One year ago today, we were holding Dad’s hands when he took his last breath. The two months leading up to that day were some of the most difficult, yet most precious moments of my life—watching Dad choke down his milk chocolate Ensure because he couldn’t down anything else, trying to get rid of his constipation, helping him fix his pillow just perfect because he couldn’t raise his arms to fix it himself, helping him to the rocking chair, to the bed, and back again, getting up with him at night to help him use the bathroom or take more pain medicine, reading him stories,
catching a glimpse of what it’s like to come to grips with the thought of missing out on the lives of your children and grandchildren, talking about life, love, and future plans, seeing the intense pain in his eyes due to the bone cancer even though his words were only praises to God, …. Somehow I thought Dad would always be there to put his strong arms around me and tell me, “You’re my favorite ___ year old." That he would always be there to wake me up in the morning with a kiss and a cheerful voice saying, “It’s the first day towards the Sabbath! Have you spent time with your Best Friend, Jesus today?” I always thought Dad would be there to share his corny jokes, his passionate mission stories, his words of wisdom. I thought he would be there to get to know any potential interests and give his input, to walk me down the isle, and even to train my children how to really work. But no… Now he is gone. He is resting in the grave until Jesus comes. I’ll never forget those last couple agonizing days, watching him labor for every breath. Yet, somehow he had peace on his face. He was ready to go. He told me he was ready to go. I know he was ready to go.

We have now made it through our first year without Dad. There have been ups and downs. There have been some laughs, but many tears. Our tendency as humans is to question God’s character when facing difficulties. The only time we say “God is good” is when we find our keys or someone is healed of their terminal illness. But who are we to be exempt from the heartaches of this sinful world? Do we judge God based off of the circumstances around us? I choose to praise God for the loss of Dad. It doesn’t take away the pain I feel or diminish how much I miss him. It simply shows that I trust God because I know Him. I know that God gives strength for every trial and that one day sin and sorrow will be no more. Dad is safe in the arms of Jesus, sleeping until the resurrection when we will be reunited for eternity. In the meantime, we have a legacy to carry on and a work to do. Dad was the greatest missionary I ever knew, and with God’s help, we can only pick up where he left off.

Mom, you are reading this letter where we spread Dad’s ashes and read his last words to us a year ago. Tears are rolling down my face as I remember… And I know your heart is breaking, too. I just want to thank you for being a strong rock in my life. Thank you for picking up and carrying on even when you don't want to. Thank you for trusting the heart of God even when you can’t understand. One day soon we will be reunited as a family, never to part again. I love you so much and am so thankful for you.

With Much Love,

1 comment:

Christy Joy said...

Dear Shama, Thank you for posting this. Over the course of the past few years I've decided that it is a difficult, difficult thing to be vulnerable, but there is nothing that knits hearts together the way open sharing does. Thank you for articulating the thoughts in the middle paragraph. I found the truths in them especially powerful.