Song in the Night

Grief Anticipated, Part 4

Dear Dad,

When I was a young girl, you were the one I took my little heartbreaks to. Looking back, I doubt that you had a clue as to what to do or say. It didn’t matter. I went to Mom with questions, problems and nightmares. But when I needed to cry, you were my parent of choice. Well, now my heart is breaking once again. But I can’t come lean on you – because you are the one I’m crying for.

The other day when we came to visit, I was appalled at how tiny and frail you had grown in just two weeks. In your own reality, you are still our hardworking provider. What did you think when it took two of us to help you stand up from your armchair and walk to the dinner table? I asked the caregiver for the chicken soup you wanted, thinking it might help with your cough.

And then, when I came back with the things you needed from the store, the soup sat uneaten in your room. Did you ever get any of it down? You wanted to reimburse me; I could see how frustrated you were at not having any money. All I said was, don’t worry, Mom took care of it. I winced even as I said it. How awful it must be for someone like you to feel totally dependent on others – no longer useful or necessary.

But you mustn’t feel that way, Dad. It is your hard work that is still, through your retirement income, paying the bills for you and Mom. And the start you gave me in life, bringing me up in a church where I could learn about God the Son, is still paying off as I practice going to Him with my tears. What I should have told you is: It’s okay to rest now.

In the future, when this tired world gives way to the new, permanent one, Jesus “will wipe every tear from [our] eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” But even now, He gives a song in the night.

All will be well.

(Quote is from Revelation 21:4)

About Jan C. Johnson

Welcome! If you like food, reading, laughing over life's little disasters, and maybe thinking about the bigger things of life, you have come to the right place. Besides blogging, I write humorous fiction, though real life tends to leave fictional humor in the shade. But I'm not a total goofball. No, really. I'm also working on a biography project. I live in North Texas with my husband, Brent. We enjoy bicycling, Mexican food, and traveling to visit our kids and grandkids.
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4 Responses to Song in the Night

  1. Cindy Gise says:

    My heart grieves with you today. Your beautiful story about your Dad and his journey from the physical world to the spiritual world conjures memories of my mother-in-law’s journery with dementia, my mother’s last days and my father’s current dealing with life. How blessed you are to have parents who are so loving. How blessed you are to be able to care for your parents even from a distance. How blessed all of you are for having Jesus in your life. Thank you for sharing your story and your Dad will all of us. May God continue to bless your family and hold you in His loving and healing hands.


  2. Jen says:

    I grieve with you, too. Isn’t the end of the road on this earth just so hard? It makes me long for Heaven, for Jesus to come, and bring permanent restoration so that death may be defeated forever.


  3. Nemo says:

    I can’t imagine what it must be like going through this… it’s heartbreaking.
    May God continue to bless and keep you and your family on this difficult road.


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