One of my sweet friends called a bit ago to say that her husband had just passed away. The tears haven't quite slowed yet.
When I was young, I walked to Elementary School. On the way there and back I would stop and visit with an elderly lady. I wish I could remember her name. I don't know how or when we became friends. I think it started with me watching her fill her flowerbeds and tend to her garden. It was the first time I heard about peat moss.
The two of us spent a lot of time together. I remember sitting at her table, talking about who knows what while eating her fresh made fruit leather. One of her walls had all kinds of sailboats on it. I loved everything about her little house and her. This lady who didn't even know who my parents were but shared her life with me, a 7 year old.
I have always had an affinity for gray hair and wrinkled eyes. As I, myself age, I've come to understand cognitively what I felt in my heart for so long, that our bodies succumb to a corruptive process, but our spirits stay youthful and vibrant.
This friend of mine who just lost her husband, though her wrinkles are plentiful, is the same as me on the inside. I consider all of this time that she has taken care of her ill husband and I love her even more. He suffered from the same disease that plagues my body. I see myself in him, limited by the shell we carry. And at the same time feel comfort in the knowledge that I have a husband who will care for me with all of the love that my friend has for her spouse.
I cry with her today. For her loss. For her service. For her empty home. My heart is with you, O.J. Richard has gone home to his Father in Heaven and is finally free of his pain.