For 5 years I was my Dad's Healthcare giver. He died in his sleep on November 19, 2004. That night I sat outside on the first step of the pool and went through everything I did that day through my mind to see if I missed something regarding his care. I cried and cried. Dad was not a sick man, he just didn't want to do anything and laid in his bed all day and night, day after day after day. I did not sleep that night out by the pool and I had to go down to the corner little mart to tell the owner of the mart, Mikey, that Dad had passed. Mikey and Dad were good friends and once a week Mikey would bring Dad candy bars. I did not want Mikey to hear that Dad had passed except from me. It was 6:30 AM when I drove to the mart and I noticed a man in the back of the store that had a "Santa Claus" build. The store was full of patrons and I did not want to disturb Mikey while he was so busy.
Suddenly the man came from the back of the store and said, "What, no smiles? It is a gorgeous day!" Well, I felt my face turn very hot and I knew that it was beet red because I was angry. What did I have to smile about? I said to the man, "There is no reason for me to smile, my Dad died yesterday afternoon." Well, that is how Mikey found out about Dad's death because of my anger. The man asked me, "Would you walk to the back of the store with me?" I felt no fear whatsoever. I said, "Sure." We walked to the back of the store and he looked at me and said this, "Do you know there are 4 things that people pray for?" I answered him saying, "No I didn't." He then asked me, "Did your Dad have enough money that he could get his medication that he needed and could get a haircut when he needed it?" I replied, "Yes, Sir." He said, "That is ONE." He asked, "Did your Dad have enough money to pay his bills and get groceries and maybe get new pajamas?"
I replied; "Yes, Sir." He said, "That is TWO." He asked, "Did your Dad have someone to care for him, make sure he got his medications on time, feed him hot food and homemade food, wash his clothes?" I replied, "Yes, Sir." He said, "That is THREE." And lastly he asked, "Did your Dad die in his own bed peacefully and in no pain and among family members?" I replied, "Yes, Sir. He said, "That is FOUR." He then told me, "Don't you see that your Dad got all 4 things that people pray for all the time?" I started to cry and he took me into his arms and I felt enveloped, and so very loved ... as I call it AGAPE love that is from the Bible. I had never, ever felt this kind of love. This man held me until I stopped crying. I got his shirt all wet from tears and I told him I was so sorry and he told me he was not concerned about that. The next thing he told me was this, "If it was not for you, your Dad would not have had all the extra years he had with his family. Do not feel like you missed anything in his care, you cared for him the best way you knew how. Now, I want you to go on and be happy, live your life and do not feel guilty." With that, he walked out of the store. Mikey had never seen this man before in his life and has not seen him since. I truly believe that this man was a true ANGEL as no one knew how my Dad died but me.
Inspiration for Story: My Dad's death.
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