My father-in-law died last week and I had the honor of being part of a family group that was in remarkable harmony. The four adult children along with their spouses, all around 50-something, worked, grieved, and rejoiced individually but also as a harmonious team.
We each sought and found our special roles. We are in the very beginning of our grief with much ahead, yet I feel so blessed to have been part of this family because of the harmonious expressions of need, sorrow, joy, the works. The stories we all shared varied greatly, of course. Every relationship is unique. The 11 grandchildren all have different histories and memories of Grandpa. The stories scattered like the floating seeds of a dandelion. Many brought healing tears and laughter, and they continue to do so.
I think a big part of the harmony was because everyone wanted harmony! Isn't that wonderful? Harmony means "pleasing arrangement of parts." This is not easy to accomplish, but if you start with that as your goal, you are certainly more likely to achieve it. And one of the best rewards of harmony, is you can know it is a wonderful gift given to your departed loved one.
Ralph was our dad, our grandpa, our friend
A lover of family from beginning to end.
At first, thoughts of him fill our hearts with grief
Overwhelmed, we fear there is no relief.
But then, we remember his countless teases,
With his jokes and side pokes, our heartache eases.
What do we picture, when we dare take a glance?
Besides his suspenders holding up his pants?
We see a life filled with honor and lots of hard work,
With some fishing and hunting thrown in for a perk!
We saw depth to this loved man, not often revealed.
And we know he’s in heaven, rejoicing and healed.