After church today we drove back to where I used to live to see some dear friends. This sweet couple and I have been friends for over 25 years. I worked with the wife--but they came as a package deal and I am so thankful they did. They have been such blessings in my life. They are about thirty years older than me and have kept a watchful eye out for me over the years. This past Friday, the wife called me to let me know she had put her husband on Hospice. I had spoken with her earlier in the week so it wasn't a huge surprise, just a disappointment hearing he really will not get better.
When we arrived we had a few minutes with him--and I was able to really express to him how much he means to me and how grateful I am to have had his love, care and friendship in my life. My heart was full and I tearfully told him thank you for all he had blessed me with throughout our years of friendship.
It isn't often you get an opportunity to tell someone who is dying what they have meant to you. I feel so blessed to have had these moments with him. He is such a good, decent, loving man and I am a better person because our paths crossed.
When we got home this evening, my mom asked me how his wife was holding up. I told her she was stronger and more peaceful than anyone I had ever seen in this situation. Truly, her courage and strength lifted me. I asked her how she was doing and she told me she was doing well--that while she would deeply miss him, she knew he needed to go. She told me she wasn't at all afraid of death, that she knew where he would be and that they would be together again. She just didn't want him to continue to suffer and knew he wouldn't want to remain here in this situation. I really was amazed at the strength and love she showed. As much as she loves him and would prefer to keep him with her, for his sake and suffering she knows she needs to let him go.
It has been a touching day and I have to keep reminding myself ~ we did not come here to stay. We always intended to return to a loving Father in Heaven. It is as it should be~to everything a time and a season.