As seedlings of God, we barely blossom on earth; we fully flower in heaven.
- Dr. Russell M. Nelson, cardiothoracic surgeon
I had in my care a handsome young husband and father. He was built like an athlete, loved being a scratch golfer and lived life to the fullest. His wife loved him very much and there was nothing she would not do for him and their two precious little girls.
His diagnosis of malignant melanoma came not too long after they married. They supported each other in all the best ways possible, and she saw to it that he accomplished as many items on his “bucket list” as humanly possibly. Just a few weeks before his death, she bundled him up early in the morning, before the sun was up, and surprised him with a hot-air balloon ride that he had wanted for years.
He was fiercely independent and arranged all of his own funeral services and burial, which left the funeral director scratching his head when he was adamant about the fact that his coffin needed to be lined with the Florida Gators’ blue and orange colors.
They spoke openly about his impending death, even taking the girls to the cemetery to see his burial site, next to the lake with the beautiful swan and beneath a huge oak tree. He died with his wife holding, loving and comforting him to the end.
A short while later she called to tell me of an experience she had the night of his death. It seems she had gotten into bed and was not yet asleep when she clearly saw him walking across a bridge in the distance. As he left the bridge, he turned to look at her and waved.
That moment will never leave her; she knew then that he was all right and would be happy in his new life. She knew too that she would be able to handle things, no matter how hard, because he would always be with her. I see her from time to time, and she has found peace and joy again.