Until We Meet Again/Saying Goodbye to Grandpa

Grandpa loved the beautiful Fall colors

It has been an amazing time for our family.  My step-grandpa moved to Minnesota in October.  He was not well.  He had many health problems and even though he wished to be strong, his body gave out.  I spent time with him in his apartment.  Occasionally we would talk.  We didn’t know each other well.  I had met him one other time in my life.  He lived in Ohio about 13 hours away, too far for someone like me to travel.

This is the first time we met last year.

He gave me a gift at the end of his life.  He was in the hospital and I knew we needed to go, so I encouraged my Mom to take me to the ICU where he was in his bed.  I told him we came to pray with him.  He opened his eyes and turned his head so I could see his smile.  It was the first time I saw real peace on his face.  He held my hand.  It was not hard for me to be there.  I don’t fear death.  I don’t fear pain because I’ve had so much of it, that I fear living for a long time.  I told him that I can’t wait to go to heaven.  Many people do not want to hear that from a young person.  They think it’s wrong to want to leave this life.  But the truth is, many of us who have lived very hard lives have seen the spiritual side of life in ways that others can’t.  I have never had this much peace.  I feel like Grandpa was loved to his last breath.

So whenever I could be there, he turned and looked at me and even had tears because he knew that I was so happy for him, that dying is not the end.  It’s a beautiful beginning.  One of our friends says that death is “The Messenger of Joy”.  I know that’s true.  It’s strange how people get afraid of death.  Like it’s the very last thing they want to happen.  I don’t feel like that.  I don’t wish to be dead before my time but I can say for sure that I will be so very happy to leave.  I will have freedom on the other side that I don’t have here.  I wrote a poem for Grandpa and I will have Mom read it at his service.  It’s a beautiful time.

Love, Karly


5 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    pinkroselady60 said,

    Hi Karly,
    Thank you for your inspiring words and I am glad you got to spend some special time with your Grandpa before he went to heaven.
    Sometimes it is fun to watch how God works things out in ways we don’t expect. He was lucky to have been close to your family during his last months here on earth. I am sure it brought him a lot of peace and joy. Give your Mom and Gregg and extra hug…I bet they need it.
    Your friend,
    Ann Strom

  2. 2

    My dear wise friend, Karly — Once again your words and your spirit have opened my heart to sweet tears. I am so grateful that your grandpa had you near in the last hours of his life. And I deeply appreciate your honesty and clarity about your own death. I am honored to be your friend and look forward to some sweet time by the Christmas tree soon. Big blessings, hugs, and admiration.
    Your forever fan,
    Barbara McAfee

  3. 3

    Amber Bullington said,

    Dearest Karly,

    I have lived with chronic pain and severe depression for much of my life. I often dream of what it will be like to die — to, once and for all, be free of the pain this life has brought me. I’ve spoken of this just once in my life — with another friend who has chronic pain. It was just after a carload of our friends had had a lively discussion about how afraid of death they are. When our friends got out of the car, my friend and I just looked at each other and said, “They just don’t get it.” But you get it, and it’s nice to hear a kindred spirit “speak” the words I hold in my heart. I was lucky to be with my father during his last weeks on Earth. One night, I fell asleep while sitting next to his bed. I was holding his hand. That night he took me flying with him. Oh, how glorious and fun and free it was! That was his great final gift to me. He showed me just how wonderful life on the other side is going to be. I, too, do not want to go before my time. I have two young daughters whom I want to be with as long as possible. But when my time comes, I will welcome death with open arms and fly into the heavens on the notes my friends will be singing.

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts and words.

    Peace & Harmony,
    Amber Bullington

  4. 4

    Alexis Z said,

    Sweet Karly,
    I wanted to tell you that I know what it feels like to lose a Grandpa. I lost mine 2 years ago now and I still miss him as much as the day after the funeral. I was unbelievably close to my Grandpa and losing him was one of the biggest growing pains I’ve ever gone through; even though it hurt very bad, I learned something very big — exactly what you said: that death is more the “messenger of joy” than someting to fear. I have found great comfort and actual joy is knowing that he no longer feels the horrid pain he felt in this world and that one day I know I will see him again. Some days I wish I could be with him and Jesus, but I know that that day will eventually come, so I’m trying my best for them both while I’m still here. Your grieving heart will be in my prayers.
    God never puts us through something He won’t follow us through and provide us the strength to accomplish.

    Love to you, my beautiful sister in Christ

  5. 5

    pinkroselady60 said,

    Hi Karly
    I thought of you today while listening to my iPod. Have you heard the song “Where I Belong” by Building 429? It made me think of the post you wrote about your Grandpa. If you are not familiar with this song you should go to iTunes and purchase it…you will love it.
    Hope your family is doing well and you are sharing lots of hugs!


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