Finding Your Way Through Losing Your Parents

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I’m an Orphan at the age of 56!

My father’s death was a glimpse into heaven.

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As children, we never want to think about losing a parent. Understanding the pain with such a loss is unfathomable at a young age.

But what about as older adults, is the pain or sense of loss any less?

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The loss of my mother years ago and now the loss of my father has affected me in ways I did not anticipate.

I think that as we get older, death affects us much more deeply than most would assume.

My Mother: Best Friend, Confidant, Pillar of the Family

My mother had a terminal disease, and we knew that because of this, we had spent our last Christmas with her, celebrated the last Mother’s Day with her, and even had the final few moments with her.

The call came, and we knew it was time to gather at her bedside. My father, brothers, and I stood vigil through the night.

I can remember holding her hand and praying so desperately that the Lord would take her quickly because she was suffering terribly.

As the sun began to rise that next morning, she left us quietly as she drew in her last breath.

We were all so exhausted emotionally and numb.

My father clung to me for a few months after that seeking his strength through me.

My mom and I were not the typical mother-daughter duo.

We argued and disagreed as any regular mother and daughter do, but we had this thing about laughing and cutting up and just being ourselves.

My Father: My Rock, My Security, My Friend

My father and I had a different dynamic. He was an old-fashioned man with the kind of principles and values that were found in the olden days.

Growing up, he was quite strict in raising me yet he was very protective and loving.

I was “daddy’s girl,” and anytime I got hurt, he was always there to fix things whether it was a scrape on the knee or a broken heart.

He taught me that family was a core value that deserved respect, trust, and above all, honor.

I was always safe as long as I had my dad!

The Day Had Come

My father was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, and we knew that we faced a difficult road ahead. “Difficult” does not even come close to what he and the entire family experienced.

The Alzheimer’s had completely taken over with a vengeance, and within six months, he was completely bedridden and mentally beriddled.

I saw this strong man that was my rock develop into a child-like shell of a man.

My visits to him were painful as he did not know who I was and he had lost all capacity over his own body.

After he was admitted to Hospice, we learned that his time was down to mere weeks at the most.

Spending every day with him for those last few weeks was a blessing because I felt he would have done the same for me.

As he declined and the nurse told us he was entering the final hours, I held his hand as I did for mom.

There was a point in that time that I heard my father say the angels were gathered.

I felt the presence of Jesus and the angels gathering around my father.

I asked dad, “What do you see?” and he replied, “it’s so warm and pretty here.”

As he drew his last breath, I felt as if I was allowed to peek into a tiny window into heaven as my father left this earth.

This experience is something I will never forget.

My father’s death was beautiful and very poignant for it allowed me to be a part of his transition to heaven.

I miss them terribly but know that they are not far and I will see them one day.

Yes, the sense of loss is deep, but I know that as a daughter of the Almighty King, I will join my father and mother in heaven one day.

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