If You Leave
Life is a series of beginnings and endings. We leave one job to start another; we quit cities, countries, or continents for a fresh start; we leave lovers and begin new relationships. What was the last thing you contemplated leaving? What were the pros and cons? Have you made up your mind? What will you choose?
At this stage of my life, there’s really only one more leavetaking that is likely to rock my world. I’m not thinking of my own leavetaking. I actually look forward to that, because I believe God, and I know that because of His mercy and grace my eternity is fixed in heaven.
The one I’m dreading and don’t like to think about is when Terry and I say our final goodbye.
And I’m already in tears. Good thing I haven’t put on my mascara yet.
Terry is over four years older than I. His health has deteriorated since his injury three years ago. He’s lost so much muscle mass, height, and energy. Chronic pain is a stinking, lousy, cheating, lifesucking devil.
I’m thankful that his mood remains good most of the time. He stays as busy as his energy will allow. He has not become a sickly invalid. That in itself would kill him.
But the likelihood is that he will die before I do, and I’m trying to be as prepared for that as I can. Ask any widow, though, who loved her husband, and she will tell you that you’re never ready; that it’s always too soon, that it’s always a shock.
The only way to avoid this part of life is to remain single and uninvolved. If I had done that, however, I would have missed out on 46 mostly good years; I wouldn’t have my four children and nine grandchildren. My life would have taken a much different direction, one I can’t even imagine.
You do a lot of inventory-taking when you reach these final stages of life. What could you have done differently, better? What do you consider your successes? One of my biggest successes was to a marry a godly man who has remained faithful and true all these years. We’ve had our moments, and still do. Neither of us is perfect. One test of true love is that you stay the course even when the downs are nearly unbearable.
I would not avoid the pain of saying goodbye to my husband, because it is completely eclipsed by all the wonderful memories. We will share heaven together. There will just be this time of separation until we both go home.