Thursday, April 25, 2013

Heaven's Waiting – A soldier's coming home.

I'm pretty sure that today, Jesus is up there in heaven just putting the final touches on a big celebration that's bout to happen for my grandpa. I'm pretty sure he's preparing to celebrate my grandpa coming home to heaven.

I can only imagine what the coming home celebration will be like for Granddad – I'm praying my grandma will be at the gates waving him in along with my great uncle Bill who was the best welcomer of guests ever. I hope his little sister who died when she was three will be there and I hope Granddad will go dancing right in, happy to be in the most perfect place in the most perfect condition.

If ever there were a person who has truly fought with every single ounce in them, it's my granddad. 

He grew up one of thirteen children in a school house in South Carolina and he worked from the time he could walk until finally they kicked him off bus driving five or six years ago. (My dad had forbid me from riding with him when I was about 8 but that's neither here nor there). He worked so his brothers and sisters could eat because with a mom that was always having babies and a dad who drank too much, that's what he had to do. He didn't have his own toothbrush or a pair of shoes until he joined the army.
While he was in the army, he met my grandma and they had four kids, including my momma.

Granddad worked in the army, worked at Cummins, owned a farm & owned gas stations. I don't think anyone could ever accuse him of not being a hard worker.

Don't worry though, he played a little too.

Then, about ten years ago, dementia started stealing away little parts of him and when I say steal, I mean steal. There's nothing kind about losing your mind. I can only imagine how frustrating it is to know you're confused but be helpless to do anything about it. It isn't fair.

Finally, almost three years ago, he came to Indiana to live with us. 

In that time, he was overdosed on a strong narcotic, he's fallen more times than I can count, he's lost his ability to walk, talk, feed himself and really do anything but breathe. And every time something new would happen, I'd ask myself why he continued to fight.

We've said goodbye to him twice now but each time, he's rallied. I've never seen anything like it. I've never seen someone get infection after infection but keep hanging on. I can't imagine why he'd keep fighting when the only thing he'd ever see were nursing home walls. I don't know.

But you know what they say, the third time's the charm and now, his blood pressure is slowly decreasing and I think heaven is just waiting for him to join them.

I could be sad, but I'm not. It would be almost selfish to be sad.

Well, I'm sad he had to go through this. I'm sad we haven't had the Granddad we know with us for nearly two years. I'm sad he lingered on through so much.

But I'm so happy he's getting called home. I'm so glad his fight will be over.

When my great uncle died, the pastor talked about how he loved to tell stories and the story he loved to tell most was of his coming home from the war. The pastor said every time my uncle would tell that story, he would cry happy tears, even until he died. I doubt any soldier feels differently.

Well if you've ever seen any coming home celebration, you know the joy of that time and I can only imagine what that celebration would be like in heaven.

Granddad's about to find out. 

This soldier is being called home.



Anonymous said...

Wow!!Granddad would be so proud of you ,Ali!Verysweet of you!!Pretty Special!

Anonymous said...

Such a beautiful post! Thank you so much for sharing!

Anonymous said...

This post is so sweet. I know exactly what you mean about not being sad. Of course it is sad, but look what is waiting for them on the other side! What glory!