Having been moved to a home not two months ago, my Papa passed peacefully last night in the company of caring and dedicated staff, to all of our surprise this morning. It's incredible how suddenly these things happen—one minute Papa had all his marbles, comfy and well cared for in his new home, and the next he's gone at a time and in a way that I had never expected.
It's been an unexpected blessing these past few months, since my Nana's passing, to get to know Papa's sweeter side on my family's visits and phone calls. Like many elderly men, he had a mind of his own and was never afraid to argue (like the time he was convinced his T.V. provider allowed him to watch sporting events before they happened) but it makes for all the more fond memories as we say goodbye.
I'm especially grateful for a phone call we had recently with Papa at a time when he was feeling especially discouraged. Thank the Lord, we were able to encourage him with the promises of Christ to those who believe on his name, and it's our prayer that salvation was the source of his peace in the hours before he passed.
It's been a strange year: my first tastes of loss seem to have come in a rapid-fire burst, but I'm so thankful for the memories Papa gave us, the interest he always showed in all of the grandkids' lives, and the lessons he taught us—namely, that life is short, so seek Jesus sooner than later, and always make time for those you love.