Saturday afternoon I was sitting with my family watching my niece’s softball game taking place somewhere in southern Ohio when something told me to check my cellphone.  My husband had texted me and I also had a missed call.  His father was not going to make it.  The family was all gathered at the hospital to say their goodbyes.  I called my husband and he tearfully told me what was going on.  He was waiting his turn to talk to his Dad for the final time.  I told him to tell his Dad thank you from me.  Later in the evening when I called back my father-in-law had passed.  Although he didn’t appear conscious I was told that after each person came into the room for the final time he would squeeze their hand in acknowledgement.  My husband took a cellphone picture of his mother sitting by the hospital bed holding his Dad’s hand.  I’m not sure what compelled him to take a picture at such an intimate moment but regardless he did and sent it to me in Ohio.  It was beautiful and sad at the same time.  His Mom clearly did not know this was taken and I caught a glimpse of a woman whose face was filled with love and sadness as she held the hand of the man she has been married to for nearly 50 years.

My husband has been holding up okay.  The funeral is this Friday and I can’t imagine this will be an easy day for anyone.  My in-law’s church has been very helpful in visiting my mother-in-law and preparing meals.   Yesterday morning she had visitors at the house also from the church.  There is a family friend who was over with his wife.  The man started to talk about how after three months that grief going to hit her hard because that is what happened to him after the loss of a parent.  I could see her chin start to quiver and I really wanted to tell this guy to keep quiet.  While I’m sure his intentions were true, she is overwhelmed as it is.  She doesn’t need that right now as she is going to have to get used to life without her partner.  I suppose people don’t really know what to say at these times.  When my bestfriend’s husband died a few years ago I remember her telling me that a co-worker of hers told her that she knew exactly what she was going through.  When my friend inquired the co-worker told her she had been through a divorce.  I told her that the person probably just didn’t want her to feel alone in her grief.  That of course, could be a complete guess on my part.  In truth, no one knows what to say. 

So, its been a busy week here.  Family is coming up from Mexico and Texas, and a few members will be staying at our house.  Next week some time I will right about my father-in-law and his life.  He was such an interesting person and I could not have asked for a better father-in-law.  He had complete faith in God and had no fears whatsoever when it came to his life ending.  He will be greatly missed.  Vaya con Dios.



26 thoughts on “Twilight

  1. You are so right. People just don’t know what to say. And I freely admit that I am one of them. Also I kind of like to avoid the typical phrases but then they are all that I can come up with. So I’d rather keep my mouth shut and give that person a big hug instead.Though then I worry that this might be misunderstood since not everybody wants to be hugged in a situation like this. It’s a major balance act since we are all different.
    My thoughts go to you and your family and I hope they’ll make it through it without too much damage to their own soul.

    • Yes, I had to wonder too if I ever said anything off as well during a time of loss. It definitely is a balancing act. I have a girlfriend who will always ask ‘What do you need from me’ when I need to talk to her about something. I think that is perfect (for someone you know well anyway).

  2. I am so sorry – my thoughts are with the extended family during this time. Your post brought tears to my eyes, especially the mention of the photo.

  3. You, Ruben and your family are in my thoughts and prayers. I am glad his father spent those last moments with those he had made his life with and loved so much. Wishing you and Ruben healing and good memories, my friend.

  4. I have a new blog: have a good day Kerstin

  5. What FD said is very good and level headed. I would like to concur with her sentiment.

  6. ElizabethFrank123

    Sorry for your loss. I am excited to hear about his wonderful life though

    • Hey girlfriend, thank you. I will hopefully have some time next week to write about him (forgive my typo in the blog –I didn’t catch that until later). I’m going to add some pics too, with hubby’s permission.

  7. Monsoon, our prayers and thoughts go out to you and yours at this time.
    Take care of one another. CC and Tony

  8. I am so very sorry to hear about the loss of your beloved father in law. My prayers are with you as you walk this new journey with your husband.

  9. The road to which everyone goes.
    The left person is sad.

  10. I’m so sorry to hear this. Please offer my condolences to your husband and his family. I feel as though I “know” him through your blogging.

    • Thanks Margy. I will. Yes, my husband is one of my favorite topics here. Maybe we’ll be able to meet you some day when we are back in Boston visiting my family.

  11. Everyone naturally has a different reaction and experience of grief. but we found that when my Dad died we wanted to talk about him. Not about us, but about him. We needed to remember the Dad we had before the final illness.


    • Hi FD, thanks for stopping by. I know you went through this not too long ago with your own father-in-law as well. I hear what you are saying about wanting to talk about him. I have heard more wonderful stories the past couple of days regarding my father-in-law. He was an amazing man that touched many. Thanks for your condolences.

  12. That’s marvelous that MIL’s church has been looking after her. I wish I could say the same about (Catholic) churches here in California.

    • Isn’t that wonderful? Their church is really a great community and all the members of it know each other well it seems. I am also Catholic and whenever there is a funeral it just seems to be other family members that support the family –no one else. Not sure why that is. Maybe each church has its own culture in a way? I’m not sure.

  13. My condolences to you, your husband and your extended family. Hoping that the right words are given to you when you need them…

    • Thanks MG. They seem to be doing okay right now but they were a very close knit family. I know they have some bumpy roads ahead but will get through. Thank you for your condolences.

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