I Miss You…

Silence filled Joes room almost a year ago. Much of the conversation that was had just seemed a bit lopsided… We spoke, and Joe looked.

 Of course for many months because of his stroke we were unable to hear what flooded our dear friends mind yet even with his silence we understood those last few weeks that our Joe was finished. He no longer wished, hoped, desired to live. Who actually could blame him. Joe, in his own way made a decision to die and for whatever reason clung to the only way that was in his power…he decided to starve himself to death.

He refused water and food.

The staff reached out to us for help. “He won’t take anything by mouth, please ask him to eat.” We stood by his bed and at first begged and pleaded with Joseph to eat. Giving us his “Joe Grin” we finally understood it was no use. The man had pride and even though he lived as a homeless man on many streets in America for 30 some years, Joe had dignity and “he” had made a decision on how it was going to end.

We no longer begged or pleaded with him to conform to what seemed like a reasonable request…”LIVE darn it…” Yet we couldn’t help quietly whispering to ourselves as we walked down the long hall to the lobby as we left, “live for what?” Joe wants to die and we had to accept his silent request.

That was a year ago for Joe, Tony, Bubba, Tony Boy and Bruce. Two years ago for Tim. Three years ago for Calvin and Jeff. Oh how the list could go on and with each name I sometimes sit and wonder if enough was said…Today Don lays in the hospital and we talk about calves outside his 6th floor hospital window. We also talk about saying goodbye.

As a writer I have come to understand that words are precious. They many times to me…are a song that soars into the highs and lows that no man has yet been able to hit with their natural voice by singing. Words command the orchestra  to lift the instrument of a heart to play a sound unable to be heard with the natural ear. Words…

I stood by Joes bed so many days touching his arm with my hand quietly telling him that “I will miss you…” The water that filled our eyes began to sing the song only God can sing inside of our hearts yet I sit here thinking… did I say enough? Do we ever? I now stand next to Don… “I’m going to miss you Don..” he smiles.

This morning I thought about the words I miss you. They are fragile words. They cause two people to remember a time that they alone only know yet so often pain jerks somewhere deep inside because we recall a name and know we are the only one that misses the what was…

When I speak the words to Don. When I said the words to Joe and before I hung up the phone that day with Jeff, I said the words…I miss you. Whenever someone says them to me it always takes me to a time that only them and I have shared and it; simple words, wrap around my heart and make it feel warm just one more time. It brings a smile to my face and for a few minutes that seem like a forever causes the next 20 steps just a little easier. I miss you…

I don’t know if much of what I just said has any meaning to my readers. I’m not really sure if it even matters however somewhere inside myself I can not help but wonder…have  I said enough? 

Joe and I talked about heaven. I reminded him who was already there and to remember to tell Jesus not to forget about me. I have sat next to Don…we talk about heaven, we talk about who he will see. I remind him to remind Jesus to not forget about me… And Don??? “I will miss you, I am so glad to be given the chance to know you… to laugh and cry with you. Don’t forget me Don… I love you.”

Words! They are a song if we simply remember to take the time to be quiet and allow the Author Himself, the Giver of life to sing them into another’s life by feeling with our hearts, crying our own tears and whispering into someones ear before the final day says goodbye…”I miss you..” 

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2 Responses to “I Miss You…”

  1. Great, thought-provoking post, Jaye. Often we don’t say “I miss you” or “I’ll miss you” often enough. Thanks for sharing.

  2. I MISS YOU SO MUCH SISTER JAYE!!!


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