This Week: Comfort
Tonight, we laughed and teased online – waiting for the prompt. Chomping at the bit like only FMF writers can. We had clues and I saw them coming. When it landed, my mind took a sudden left turn and I’m going off in a completely different direction than where was heading. Tears are running as I write.
Bam. Doesn’t it just happen like that.
I can hear him clearly in my head as I start to write. A pure, clean tenor soaring above the opening bars of Handel’s timeless music:
Comfort ye. Comfort ye my people.
Every Christmas my father sang this. Sometimes in church with the choir. And if not, always at home. Sometimes with me playing along on the piano – trying to keep up and stay smooth – to do justice to this beautiful music. This is one of my favorite memories I have of my father. Any I have of us together with our instruments is precious to me. Whether singing, playing the guitar together with he and my brother, singing in choir together while my mother directed, singing the blessing around the table in harmony – we were a musical family – and that music brought a connection and comfort and element to our relationship that wouldn’t have been there otherwise.
I miss that so much.
Fourteen years ago, my father had his first stroke. There have been several more since then. Each one has taken away a little more of the strong, independent, accomplished man that I grew up with. The man who was my confidante and my comfort.
The truth is, I don’t know if I’ll have a chance to see him again here in this life. I can only hope. Hope that I’ll have a chance to get home one more time before he’s called Home. There is comfort knowing that this life is not the end; that I’ll see him again; and that when I do, we’ll both be freed of the physical ties that bind us and in our new bodies. I’m going to need that knowledge to hold onto when it’s time to say goodbye here. Even though I know it will only be for a while. It will be.
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Jerry Hadley sings Comfort Ye My People from Handel's Messiah