The King's sweet grandfather passed away yesterday.
He had been sick for about 10 days.
While we are sad and a bit surprised, we are mostly happy for him.
He is spending eternity with our Saviour and with his sweet bride.
Papa lost his wife 20 years ago. Though I never knew her, The King has often told me that he was never the same after she passed.
As we began the task of going through his things yesterday (he was already in the process of moving) I began to see what The King meant by that.
He still had a pair of her glasses in his bedside table.
There were postcards from their honeymoon in his top dresser drawer.
He had her picture --and her obituary-- taped on the wall beside his chair. Her Bible was also beside his chair.
I opened a cabinet and found all of her recipes neatly stacked.
I also found every program for every football game The King ever played.
He had 6 copies of the newspaper with our wedding announcement. And a napkin from our reception.
He saved The King's sisters' graduation announcements. And their baby shoes.
He had, literally, the funeral programs from every funeral he had ever attended.
All of our Christmas cards were in his living room. Every photo of himself and The Princess were there, too.
The coffee mug that The Princess painted for him in 2003 was proudly displayed on his television.
He had saved every important thing from his life with his wife.
And it seems that he had saved the details from all that she had missed. For her.
Two things particularly touched my heart. The King's grandmother became ill while she was out of town. He had to rush her home and took her straight to the hospital. She never returned to their home.
As we were going through his closet, we found her overnight bag.
It was still packed for that last trip. Still. After 20 years.
He couldn't bear to unpack it.
He has moved twice since he lost his wife. Yet he holds on to her glasses and recipes. He has moved her packed bag. I would guess that the picture and her obituary have been by his chair no matter where he has lived.
The other sweet thing was also found in his bedside table. Her calendar for 1988. The year she died.
Up until July, she had 3 or 4 entries each week. Trips they took and appointments they made.
She wrote down when they had a cold and what the grandkids were doing.
She noted that last trip they took.
And then there were 3 more entries...
Nothing else filled the pages.
Yet it stayed in his bedside table for 20 years.
I am certain that in many ways that calendar is much like his life.
Nothing really filled his pages for the last 20 years.
He remained happy. He was incredibly active. He was very involved with his family.
But he missed his bride.
We rejoice that they have been reunited and will never be apart again.