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Linda Beck: Regretting my losses

Disability and handicaps resulting from disease have been two of my greatest regrets in life. Loss of loved ones can be a greater regret! I was talking to my 12-year-old granddaughter about death one day and thought back to the first death that affected me. That was the loss of my grandfather just a few weeks before my senior year in high school.

I was spending the summer babysitting three children in Charlotte to earn some money for my last year in school. I had received a call that my “Paw-paw” was asking to see me so I went home two weeks early. That was in the days when bodies were carried in and out of homes. I stood at the foot of his bed and watched him take his last breath. I observed as they took his body out the front door and later returned his coffin to the home through a window. I watched and listened to laughter and conversation as my heart broke over my first loss of someone I loved. I didn’t understand how anyone could be having such a good time as I grieved over my grandfather’s death.

As I sat writing this one morning in November 2015, one of my favorite hymns, “He is Here” coincidentally played softly in the background and I felt the presence of the Lord during the writing of this story.

That period of time when I went through the loss of my grandfather was also a time of few possessions, little income, and uncertainty about my future life.

During this sad time, my future husband came into my life and our marriage of 27 years came together. We both experienced the loss of many loved ones on both sides of our families during those years. Joe’s death at the early age of 47 has certainly been the greatest loss in my life!

Joe died in our bedroom and one might say I watched him leave this life just as I had my grandfather and later my mother when she died in the Brian Center. I also lost my oldest brother to a heart attack without having seen him for several months.

Losing my ability to stand or walk has once again been a time of frustration, but I have accepted that a full recovery is unlikely. If I still had the warm water and transportation to the pool every day, another miracle could happen if it were God’s will as it was from 1993-1996. But I cannot live in the circumstances of the past; those are not the circumstances of the present, and I do not know what the future will bring.

Even though I know and believe that God answers prayer, I know that in The Lord’s Prayer we are taught to pray for “thy will to be done.” I remind myself that his plans are not my plans. I am at peace with my life as it is even though I know things might change again anytime. It is best not to live in fear (2 Timothy 1:7) and just “KEEP ON KEEPING ON.”

 

Linda Beck lives in Woodleaf. Email her at lindainthecards@gmail.com

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