A year or so ago, while driving Roxie, my little reddish-blonde Pomeranian to the groomer’s, I passed what was once the home and property of my Dad and Stepmother, who are now both deceased. At the age of only 53, my father passed away from complications of Acute Myelogenous Leukemia in the summer of 2005. My stepmother passed away eight years later of complications from Lupus. She was only 63.
Each time I pass that beautiful two-story home and spread of property spotted with gorgeous flower beds and bushes and covered with fresh green grass, I cannot help but gaze at it, remembering how overgrown the place was when they bought it. During the fifteen years my dad and stepmom lived there, they transformed the place from the eyesore it had once been to the gorgeous stretch of property it is today.
Those flower beds and bushes, still present today, are the footprint they left behind.
Even now, years after their deaths, the blood, sweat, and tears they both poured into the place is still evident! And I find myself thinking, “My Goodness! They should still be here!”
I go on thinking, “I should be able to pull into the driveway even today and see my father sitting on that wrap-around porch, taking a draw off a cigarette and looking over the property. He should be beaming with pride at the results of years of hard, often hot work. I should be able to see my stepmother crouched in one of the flower beds, pulling weeds with gloved hands.”.
I often ask myself if these thoughts are sinful…if thinking this way is, in fact, the same as saying that maybe God was wrong in taking them at such an early age. So I think this with caution.
Then I remind myself…or maybe it is God reminding me that I am only human and it is only my mere mortal and human mind which cries out, “They should still be here!”. And that God’s ways are beyond all comprehension…beyond our human understanding.
The reality is that, in the grand scheme of things, God’s plan is that some will not grow to a ripe old age like others. But that’s okay because although I miss them terribly, I can take comfort in knowing that my dad and stepmother are in a much better place than any of us left here on Earth.
Nevertheless, each time I drive past that old house and stretch of property, my heart can’t help but cry out, “They should still be here!”.