Monday, May 20, 2013

Overcoming Death

My children are hurting real bad now, they lost their hero, their beloved Granddad.

Our tears are only for ourselves!   For him we rejoice!
He has overcome death!
He's Home! 

My heartbroken grandson says goodbye.

I feel helpless, but I've learned  a few things about dealing with a loss,
and here is what I'm doing to get through the grieving process, and sharing with them.

    Surviving a Loss

Singing and listening to all the hymns of comfort the country ballads.
 You-tube and Playlist have many  appropriate country songs and hymns.
  • Be Not Afraid by Daniel O"Donnell
  • Lead Me Home by Jamey Johnson
  • Beulah Land by Allison Krauss, the Gaithers, or America's Bluegrass Band   
  • Softly and Tenderly by George Jones
  • Peace in the Valley by Tennessee Ernie Ford
  • Going Home by Clyde Clark,   or Ricky Skaggs
  • When I get to Where I'm Going by Brad Paisley
  • Amazing Grace by Chris Tomlin

Talking about his great life experiences and family memories, funny stories,
     Write down some stories, find old letters, record people's comments, stories.
    (I blog about it!)  Look at videos and home movies, photo albums. mementos, gifts he gave you.
   Set up a shrine, if you need to, with his photo, the funeral program, anything that reminds you of him.

Letting the tears and sad feelings come.
  Cry, cry some more, it's okay, I tell my kids.  You have to let yourself have those sad feelings, experience the grief, it's part of the process. Then when you think you're done  with the tears, they may come back , but still let them fall.  It may take a long time before the pain stops.

Then celebrate him, his life, his accomplishments, his faith,
 his legacy of love for family, his country and God.

Let others in!
 Don't try to handle it alone, you need others now, and it's wrong to shut them out.  Don't worry about what to say to them, or if they say the wrong things, don't get mad..

Let go, let God.   Ask God to help you.  Sometimes when we are vulnerable like this,  is when we truly realize our need for the Lord in our lives.  He will give you  wisdom, strength and comfort.

Remember, The Great Healer is only a prayer away!

Mae and Walter, married for 67 years!
These were my in-laws, love in action.  What an example!

This is the oldest and the youngest members of our family.
My  precious grandson, Tommy had  a recent visit with his great-grandfather.

Military honors
 Walter was a WWII Veteran, served  in the U.S. Navy
as a Naval Flight Instructor

A quiet moment  with my granddaughter, at the funeral reception after.
It's important to be a good example to the kids, and give a little extra TLC.
I wanted to reassure her that  because of his long life and great faith,
Granddad was really ready to meet his maker, and now he is in Heaven. 
 I told her that our love will always live on and that
he will always be with us, because of the love we shared. 
A.A. Milne's poem says it best.

"If ever there is a tomorrow when we're not together...
there is something you must always remember.
 You are braver than you believe,
 stronger than you seem,
 and smarter than you think. 
 But the most important thing is, even if we're apart...
I'll always be with you."
A.A. Milne

This thoughtful conversation between Pooh and Christopher Robin,
 came to my mind, and I find it comforting. 
 I first heard it recited at another sad funeral service, for my grandson's older brother.  

  Your friends can be a wonderful source of comfort when you are hurting so bad.
  Let your friends and family in, they want to help you.

Do you feel as though you don't quite know
 what to say?
 Here are some thoughtful expressions I found in a magazine article.

Good Grief
When someone you know loses a loved 
one, it's hard to know what to say. Try
these tips from David Kessler, Co author of
On Grief and Grieving     (Scribner)

I am so sorry for your loss.

  I  wish I had the right words ---
just know that I care.

I don't know how you feel, but
I'm here for you.

You and your loved one will be in my thoughts.

My favorite memory of 
your loved one is........

May the peace of God be with you!

Love, Linda

Sunday, May 12, 2013

My Earthly Angel - Mother

"A mother is the truest friend we have, when
 trials, heavy and sudden, fall upon us;
when adversity takes the place of prosperity;
when friends who rejoice with us in our
sunshine, desert us when troubles thicken 
around us, still she will cling to us,  and 
endeveador by her kind precepts and counsels
to dissipate the clouds of darkness, and
cause peace to return to our hearts." 
---Washington Irving

My Mother, just sitting on the porch with me.
 She's the  mother of seven children, 21 grandchildren, and 5 great grandchildren!
    She's in her 80's now, and I am so grateful that I still have her, and she's relatively
 healthy and active.  She had a big family, a true blessing in the golden years,
 to have raised a bunch of  strong, healthy, happy kids, and  then watch them
with their children, and now grandchildren. I  am so glad now that  she has so many
people who can all look after her, in her later years. She's got nurses, carpenters, a hairdresser,
  great cooks, seashore homeowners, auto  mechanics, and  plenty of willing chauffeurs in her brood!  
We spoil her, but it's a small reward, not anywhere near enough compensation.
For she certainly earned  a little attention, working so hard raising all of  seven of  us, 
          and humbly maintaining our home. She's shared her faith and love of the Lord with
all of us, always, the best gift you can possibly give your children! 
  In all things acknowledging  Him,  Mother  has always been a shining example  to us! 
                    Thank you, Mother, for the good  life you've given us,
                    and for your constant,  tender love and care.  We honor you today!

We visited Mama at the nursing home today.
Sadly, Ted's mother is not doing so well, she can not speak, walk or remember
very much.. But Ted feels blessed that she dearly loved him and always supported
 and encouraged him when she was able.  She was generous, kind and compassionate and 
 taught him to be good and kind, and giving .Most of her years were spent caring for others
 in her long nursing career.She was the driving force behind him, pushing him to get his education.
 We just pray that she stays comfortable the rest of her days,and knows how very 
much we love her.  Thank you,  Mama for your love and care.

"The mother... holds the key of the soul;
 and it is she who stamps the coin of character"

   Happy Mother's Day!  

Love, Linda