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> Trevor's Grandpa Has Gone Home, Reunited in the Perfect World
Gretta's Mom
post Aug 10 2014, 02:51 PM
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Hello all friends of Bobbie, Trevor, Gretta, and/or Rufus

Another of our "people" family has gone to the Perfect World - Bobbie's 86-year old father.

When Bobbie first got cancer, her dad spent a winter with her and her husband in Baltimore so that we wouldn't have to endure another northern Minnesota winter. While he was here, he had the second of three strokes, the side effects of which would eventually take his life. He was so sad when he left Baltimore that he would have to go into assisted living instead of back to his house. A few months later, his name came to the top of the waiting list at the Veterans Home, where he had spent thousands of volunteer hours after my mother's death in 2003. Like our beloved animals, we are all going to die of something someday and August 1 was dad's day to go home to God, his wife, Bobbie and all the most-loved dogs. He was fascinated by my half black lab/half Newfie because the dog could sit in a perfect sphynx pose for such a long time without moving a muscle. Dad thought Rufus looked just like a sculpture.

During Bobbie's last months Ii moved to Baltimore to be with her. When she went home, I stayed here to live (I love the city). For a long time I could talk to dad on the phone - albeit in very short conversations and under the eagle eye of our middle sister who took it upon herself to guard dad from all contact she didn't approve. Although I bought him the finest pair of hearing aids on the planet (from Germany) he and his caregivers could never get the hang of adjusting them so they became just brass-colored baubles. finally we couldn't talk on the phone at all. So I wrote him "picture letters" - basically Power-Point-like single sheets with a design or picture and some 36-point type words. He had to have them read to him and I suspect many of them were not. But a person can only do what they can do - and if interference takes place somewhere else, one is powerless. At least one can look oneself in the mirror with some honor.

I was blessed to be able to spend two days alone with dad in what would end up being the last week of his earthly life. He was cogent and could hear if I spoke slowly and directly into the hearing aid. We were blessed to be able to have all the conversations that some people never get to have and then spend the rest of their lives regretting.

Please read between the lines or contact me privately to talk about my not being able to be with dad as he passed or at his funeral, which is tomorrow. Send me a private message and I will send you my personal e-mail. Today (his memorial) and tomorrow are going to be the saddest days of my life - prevented from honoring dad with my presence at his last hurrah and seeing and touching his body and kissing him good bye for the last time. But my dad was about gentleness, peace, humility and grace, NOT about three-ring circuses conducted by someone whose mind is not right. Dad is in heaven and he knows what the real story is.

Thank you for being there for Bobbie and me as we have both had the worst two years of our lives. She is safe, happy, healthy, carefree and basking in the love of God and the precious animals who lived with her here on earth. My father is with God, his family and his many, many friends from all over the world. They have made it. The rest of us are still with the Pilgrim on his wearisome Progress.

God bless all of you and please keep posting about the precious animals who are in your life. Without Lightning Strike I would surely be in a mental hospital somewhere.

Gretta and Rufus's mom
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LoveMyMickey
post Aug 10 2014, 05:51 PM
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Dear Jeanne,

I am so sorry you lost your dad. I read his obit. He was a wonderful and caring man. I tried to write you an email, but yahoo didn't want to work for me tonight. Try to send me an email and I will get back to you tomorrow. Again I am so sorry. But we know he is in a better place and we'll all meet someday.
May God Bless and Comfort You.

Love and Hugs,

LMM


--------------------
"Love knows not its own depth until the hour of separation."
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Gretta's Mom
post Aug 11 2014, 05:43 AM
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Thank you so much, Love My Mickey.

My dad truly was, as he wrote in his "Five Wishes" preplanning, a kind and humble man.

I am so happy I carry his name. I know now it will remind me to take up the banner of kindness and humbleness which he so outstandingly showed.

Thank you for being such a true friend and Musketeer.

Jeanne
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Brutus
post Aug 12 2014, 09:07 AM
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I am very sorry Jeanne. You sure have had to deal with a lot lately. My prayers are with you. I too have lost a sister and both my parents recently. Many hugs.


--------------------
****Sonya****

In loving memory of my soulmate, Brutus...never forgotten, always missed.

Brutus Midnight Gunsmoke
Black Lab and best friend
11-22-96 to 11-16-09
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Gretta's Mom
post Aug 12 2014, 01:27 PM
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Oh Sonya, my heart and prayers go out to YOU. Losing a sister and BOTH your parents seems like unendurable pain. I guess we know now what the elders meant when they sang about this world being nothing but a vale of tears. Someday we will all be together and, in the words of Andre Crouch "No more crying there, we are going to see the King"

God be with you Sonya, until we all meet again.

Jeanne

(Gretta and Rufus's mom)
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Gretta's Mom
post Aug 18 2014, 07:07 AM
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Hi Trevor, Gretta and Rufus,

Don't you just love the dad? Can you just see where Bobbie got her beautiful soul and her sense of humor? Please stick close to him as he learns his way around the perfect World. I keep forgetting that there isn't ANY sadness in the Perfect World - only peace, happiness, health, youth, sunshine. good meals and love, love, love. Please give the dad a love-lick for me and tell him I love him and miss him SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO much.

Thanks guys. I love and miss you too.

Your mom and aunt
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Gretta's Mom
post Aug 30 2014, 09:28 AM
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Calling all Trevor's brother and cousins and honorary cousins like Anie, Mugsy, Mickey, Jake, Georgie and all the others,

On earth here it's Labor Day weekend. "The Dad" is a very good story teller and HIS dad was a leader in the labor movement. Why don't you all get together and sit at The Dad's feet and get him to tell you about HIS dad and what they did for Labor Day in the old days.

Dad, I love you, I miss you. Now there is nobody to share memories. Nobody to be able to say, "Remember when we ...." I hope you are proud of my life so far and my life to come. That's the most important thing in the world to me.

Gretta and Rufus's mom
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Gretta's Mom
post Sep 13 2014, 06:12 AM
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Dear dad.

I know Wednesday was your first birthday in heaven and I didn't do a thing to honor it. Outwardly, that is. I grieved for you every minute of that day in my heart and asked all the dog friends
to organize a prayer hum for you. That' when all the animals and their people, in the Perfect Word or still on earth set a time and all hum at the same time (because animals have a hard time
talking together.

I love you Dad. II honor and respect you more than anyone else on earth or heaven - except God. Please look down on us and lend us some hope and support when we start to go astray.

Thank you my dear father.

Jeannie
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Gretta's Mom
post Sep 28 2014, 06:05 AM
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Calling all "Trevor's pack".
No special occasion - but every day must be special in the Perfect World.
Just gather 'round Trevor's grandpa and tell him how glad you are to have him with you and how much his namesake daughter misses him.

Just bask in the warmth of heaven and the love of the Good Shepherd, whom each of you loved in your own way.

Please, each of you send your spirits to your moms, dads, grandmas, grandpas, friends or whomever is your soulmate still on this earth and let us, whose hearts are missing pieces, that you love us just like we love you.

Gretta and Rufus's mom

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Gretta's Mom
post Oct 13 2014, 06:40 AM
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Heaven is blessed today with a beautiful "Dad" soul. He's wearing his long white robe (sometimes, when he has to)

and he's walking around heaven all day. Please, all of you up there in the Perfect World who know him, tell him that his

namesake down here on earth misses him and loves him. I have a name to remember him by. Every time someone calls that

name I remember the most gentle, loving, kind, humble, funny father there ever was.

Heaven, please enjoy him because when I get there I am going to monopolize him for a LONG time.

And I will hunt him down in the Irish section - for sure.

Gretta and Rufus's mom
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Gretta's Mom
post Nov 1 2014, 11:04 AM
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Hello Trevor's grandpa,

First I want you to know how much I love you and miss you.

MY FATHER"S GONE

My father's gone, they said he was living in a Perfect World.

Maybe that's true. I've been taught that all my life.

But now my father's gone and I can't ask him.

My father's gone, now there is no one I can entertain with my stories of my travels or my job.

And he cannot tell me stories about his delinquent youth.

Are they all true> My father's gone now so I can't ask him.

My father's gone, no gentle man for me to hug, no gentle man to tell me that he loves me

No matter what.

My father's gone, so there won't be any presents this Christmas, for either of us.

My father's gone. The one who was so frightened of finger sticks he fainted yet he watched all night every night for months when my baby sister was sick unto death.

The one who said, when even the best doctors in the country foretold certain death from an unknown condition,

"She'll be all right." And she was.

My father's gone, but his name lives on in me.

My father's gone, but his love lives on in the hearts of the thousands of children whose homes are in the Guatemala City dump who now have shoes to wear.

In the families he helped, silently, without anyone knowing.

In all the people who loved him for his hard work and humility - and Irish jokes.

My father's gone, so I can't ask him the question I most want the answer to.

Not, "Do you love me?" because every day of my life he showed me his love.

The question I won't get answered until I go to where my father's gone is

"Are you proud of me?"

I love you daddy, Now and forever.
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Gretta's Mom
post Nov 15 2014, 03:38 PM
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Hello dear daddy

Did you hear all the wonderful preaching at the revival this week? It really lifted my heart.

I still don't know what I'm doing yet. Too much change all at once.

Trevor's mom dying. Rufus dying.

Me moving here.

Retirement.

Then, the cruelest blow of all - you leaving this world and going on to your eternal reward.

I can now never ask you the question I most want to hear you answer. "Are you proud of me?"

I guess if I do as the old song says and "Live So God Can Use You", that will automatically make me live in ways to make you proud of me.

Bishop Tutu, the one who was the Chairman of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission in South Africa when apartheid declared illegal. And then he did the same work in Rwanda - between the Hutus and the Tutsis. He's now one of the world "Seven Elders" working at the World Court of Justice in The Hague, Netherlands. He and his daughter have a book out called "The Way of Forgiveness." It's a step-by-step process that he uses to get these bitter enemies to forgive each other. It's a VERY hard process. It really requires you to dig down deep into your soul and bring out all the pain and then work on forgiving the person or group who did it to you and then decided to either Reconcile or Release the relationship. I've worked through it using Reen and the person I need to forgive and It has worked very well. I have chosen, even before I started the process, to "release" our relationship. To separate with no contact, but with as little ill will as I can on my side. I know I have contributed to this situation so now I have to work the parts where you ask the other person to forgive you. And then you work on forgiving yourself for your part in it. I know I will be a better person when all this work is done. I though I should tell you about this because the fighting that went on between Reen and me really upset you and you just couldn't understand why we just didn't make up and become friends. I know you know all this now because you are in heaven, but I wanted to tell you about it. too.

Like me. Bishop Tutu lost his father very quickly after their last conversation. It was even sadder than ours. The Bishop's father was a terrible alcoholic who used to best his wife and children. The day before he died he asked to talk to his son, Bishop Tutu. That day Bishop Tutu had driven halfway across Africa and was very tired so he asked his father if they could talk the next day. That night his father died. Bishop Tutu says it still hurts - that maybe his father was going to say something about his ill-treatment of his family.

I miss you SO much. I mis having someone to share bits and pieces of my life with. I only got 1% of the way through the things I wanted to thank you for. But you're in heaven now and I'm sure you can see and know what's in my heart.

I'll do the best I can, Daddy, to honor you and make you proud of me.

Love,

Gretta and Rufus's mom
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Gretta's Mom
post Nov 28 2014, 06:32 AM
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To the best dad there ever was

My heart is so filled with grief and my eyes so filled with tears that I can only say a few words at a time.

I love you

I miss you

I honor you

I remember you

I carry your name with pride

I need you

I will carry on your teaching

Thank you for never letting me feel the poverty that I now know was so much a part of our family

Thank you for being a kind and upright man

Thank you for your example of helping the poor

Thank you for your humor

Thank you for your encouragement

Thank you for your support

With 6000 children living in a municipal dump, thank you for the gift of shoes

And a thousand thousand more things

Thank you God for sending me the most perfect father who ever lived.



Your oldest daughter.

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Gretta's Mom
post Dec 16 2014, 06:31 AM
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Dear Trevor's grandpa

My heart is so sad that I can't write much. Just know that when you went to the Perfect World, you took a big piece of my heart with you. For all practical purposes, I am now an orphan and it hurts a lot.

But, like you, when tragedy struck, I will straighten my spine, put a determined look on my face and go do what has to be dome (including misspell some words smile.gif.

I love you every minute of every day and miss you every second. And in there somewhere I thank God for giving me the best dad in the world.

Gretta and "The Sphynx's" mom
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Gretta's Mom
post Jan 6 2015, 07:09 AM
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Dear, dear dad,

My hero, my best friend, my constant cheerleader. my wise man, my best storyteller in the world. In our little family, I think we understood each other best. I know you and Bobbie loved each other best and I have nothing but happiness about that. I was more like a son to you than a daughter. I went to college, got good jobs, supported my sisters when they needed it. I SO enjoyed all our talks about what was going on in our work worlds. Especially after mom died, we were the adults in the family. I am. as the spiritual says, "almost to the ground" that Bobbie died. How wonderful that you could live with her for those months. I am so sorry that our middle sister made it impossible for me to be with you at the end of your life on earth and to come to your last ceremony. But our minds running on the same channel makes me know that you, in heaven knew exactly what was going on and why I did what I did and that it didn't mean I didn't love you, that I just didn't want to turn your last ceremony on earth into a three-ring circus or nuclear war. How could I grieve you under those circumstances?

Thank you from the bottom of my heart for giving me your name. I carry it with me and it reminds me of you whenever I hear it called. And it also reminds me to try to live like you did - so that I, too, could say at the end of my life that I wanted to be remembered as a kind and humble man.

I love you, dad and I always will. (And Rufus is now doing his sphynx pose in heaven. I hope you get to see him and it must be so much fun to be able to talk to him and Gretta.)

There is a mass for Bobbie this morning. Stan is working so I am going by myself. Sister Jude gives me the evil eye every time she sees me so I just smile like a happy idiot. That church is giving me a very wide berth since I wrote my lengthy, scholary letter to the Archbishop proving with the Vatican's own words that Father Aitken and Sister Jude were WRONG, WRONG, WRONG not to let me sing my song at Bobbie's funeral. Oh well, she can hear me sing it from heaven.

I love you dad. You are the best father anyone could have.

Gretta and Rufus's mom
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Gretta's Mom
post Feb 1 2015, 06:59 AM
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Good morning to the best father who ever lived!

I'm sorry I haven't written for so long, but that doesn't mean I don't love you or have forgotten you. How could I forget the person whose name I carry and who always had my back. As long as you were on earth, there was a generation older than me. Now I am that generation. Please ask the Good shepherd to send me some wisdom about how I should plan for my old age: financial agent, health care POA, end of life decisions. I'm like a dog chasing his tail right now. Please help me to take that first step and guide me down that path.

I hope Gretta and Rufus are sticking close to you in the perfect world. It must be so good to be able to talk with each other. Someday I will know their stories, too. On earth, you were my hero. You made one heroic but humanly impossible decision and stuck with it all your life. But with the help of God, you stuck with it. Your strength and courage is truly heavenly. Please walk with me on what remains of my earthly journey, until the day we can meet in heaven.

Jeannie (Gretta and Rufus's mom)
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Gretta's Mom
post Feb 23 2015, 09:39 AM
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Hi Daddy

I wrote you a long letter yesterday on my BrokenHeartDog file. There were a lot of things I wanted to say that don't belong in a public forum.
I love you Daddy. Please pet Gretta and Rufus for me, OK?

Their mom
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Gretta's Mom
post Mar 15 2015, 08:15 AM
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Dear Gretta and Rufus's grandpa,

Now I know what you must have felt like all those years you were alone after mom died. It's a sadness that never goes away. We can take medicine but it doesn't really get way down deep in the heart where the sadness and grief is. Only when we get to heaven where you are will it go away. Tuesday is a big Saint Patrick's Day parade here in Baltimore but it's such a zoo already that I don't think I'm going to go. All I feel like doing is curling up under a warm blanket and sleeping. I know you know the feeling. Good thing that Stan has two wonderful dogs who really need walks and he never walks them. I manage to go walking with them about 4 days a week. I could do more but I don't want to be around him too much as he is acting out pretty badly. He's starting to work more at the funeral home and I suspect he is leaving the dogs alone and not saying anything. Poor things! They didn't do anything but make Roberta happy and now they are not being cared for very well. It's good exercise for me so I shouldn't be so lazy - even though it's all the way across the city (about as far as it was to Hopkins) I should add a day or so to my dog walking. I am absolutely no-contact with Reen. The other day he lawyer sent me a letter about your estate having to go to probate - and it's because she didn't handle her transfer of OTP stock correctly that this has to happen. Oh well. Some things never change. It was completely the right decision to give her the house so that she has a place to live without having to live with me. This time I would ABSOLUTELY REFUSE!

I hope you and Roberta and our brother Timmy are having many many chances to spend time together in heaven. Once in a while could you please ask the Good Shepherd to send down some rays of consolation to me? Thank you dad.

I love you yesterday, tomorrow and forever.

Your namesake
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Gretta's Mom
post Apr 13 2015, 08:47 AM
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Hi Dad,

It's been a long time since I wrote to you. It's been a a long time since I've written to ANYBODY! Down deep, I am SO happy that you are now in heaven with Mom and Bobbie. And our brother Timmie, whom nobody got a chance to know on this earth. And I'm sure you heard that the pope told a little boy that he would see his dog again in heaven - and, boy, is the church trying to back pedal on THAT! But I choose to believe that is true because it helps me here on earth to deal with all the losses That have happened to me during the past year.

As the oldest of three girls, I think I played the "son" role in the family. So I am now working on my Five Wishes document and trying to get things arranged for when it's my turn to come to heaven. I'm going to put in HUGE type: DO NOT PUT ME IN A HOSPICE!!!!! You know the reason why. I remember all the poignant questions on the FIVE WISHES form you and I went through and so I am going to have my pastor here act as my health care agent. He understands medicine a WHOLE lot better than Stan and he is a MUCH stronger person that Stan so I will be much more confident that he will not just cave to something the doctors are trying to force him to do. Maryland also has a form that has to me completed by a medical doctor - which they used in a very bad way in Bobbie's case. So I need to get that form done while I am NOT sick to make sure they don't try to pull a fast one on me by having some hospital social worker come and give me a once-over and then fill the form in any way the social worker wanted. NOT ME!!!!!
I'm going to use Stan as my financial representative, since I believe he will either know what to do with my bills or get some help from his neighbor Ralph, a retired Lawyer. I came across an ad for the Trappists who hand carve wooden caskets out of wood they grow themselves. I know you always said you wanted to be buried in a cardboard box from Saint John's (and with you know who in charge I'm sure THAT didn't happen. The Trappists have two levels of caskets: plain and premium. The premium looks very much like as funeral home casket. The plain one looks exactly like a pine or oak wooden box. One of them is made of different colored oak pieces and looks very pretty. Since I go to the Black church now and they are into "fancy" in everything the do, I'm going to show the pictures to my Pastor and explain why I want a plain one.

Thank you for being the kind of father that instilled a mind in me that wouldn't approach this task without freaking out. I love you SO much, Daddy. And I am waiting to be reunited with you in heaven.

Your namesake
Gretta and Rufus's Mother
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Gretta's Mom
post Jul 7 2015, 03:06 PM
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Hello Trevor's Grandpa

It's me, your oldest daughter. I'm SOOOOOOOOOOO sorry that I haven't written to you for so long. My heart felt like it was just empty. And a musician whom I LOVE (his music, that is) died about two weeks ago and Saturday is his funeral. It's going to be in Virginia, about 160 miles from here and I AM going!! The group was a three member group called the Holmes Brothers. Popsie Dixon (an adopted Holmes brother), their amazing percussionist and an even more amazing falsetto, died last January. Now the lead Holmes Brother has died of pulmonary hypertension. This leaves only the oldest Holmes Brother, Sherman, who is having a truly terrible time.

I know Popsie Dixon and Wendell Holmes are in heaven and I know they are playing and singing somewhere up there. And I know you'd LOVE their music. Ask around and turn your ear toward the music and I know you will find them. Tell them I love them. Wendell's wife Barbara said she and Wendell were so moved by a letter I had written to them before he died that she was going to have it read at next Saturday's memorial service. How does a person go on when you know you will never ever hear your best loved performer sing or play again? I've gotta try harder so I make it in to heaven and can see YOU and we can go together to hear the Holmes Brothers playing around the throne of God.

I love you.

Gretta and Rufus's mom
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