Monday, November 3, 2008

A battle well fought

I spent many hours in the hospital this weekend feeling helpless. My oldest cousin Jeff passed away after a battle with cancer, leaving behind a beautiful wife and two bright eyed children.

During those hours of grief in the oncology ICU, I didn't know what to say or do. I was just...there. Watching. Praying. Hoping.

I was moved by the love that was shown during those hours. I don't know of anything that can be purer than a mother's and a wife's love, nor can there be anything so exquisite as their grief. I saw the courage of a father and the tender kindness of a sister. I witnessed the bonds of affection that tie family together, knotted with the peace and promise of a reunion scheduled for all eternity.

Jeff's struggle on earth is over. His course is finished, his battle through. With all the strength and tenacity that Jeff showed, it is now our turn to fight through this trial. The empty days and long hours will stretch until they seem unbearable to those who for so long traveled with Jeff along life's paths.

"Oh stong soul, by what shore
Tarriest thou now? For that force,
Surely, has not been left vain!
Somewhere, surely, afar,
In the sounding labour-house vast
Of being, is practiced that strength,
Zealous, beneficent, firm!

Yea, in some far-shining sphere,
Stil thou performest the word
Of the God in whom thou dost live,
Prompt, unwearied as here!
"

The battle now turns to those who knew and loved Jeff, to live in rememberance without remorse, to step into the future in submission without sulleness.

Jeff, we miss you.

9 comments:

Nellie said...

Dave, Wow you truly know how to write what we all feel. I do look forward to that grand reunion.

Susan said...

That was a beautifully written post about the family and Emily. I felt the same way sitting there, helpless, but I feel that we all needed to be there to give our support and show our love to Jeff and the family.

Kori Ann said...

What a beautiful post. Thank you. I agree you do know how to write what we all feel.

Jamie said...

Wow. Nice words, brother. Nice words. I get to see you in two days. Yayyyyyyy!!

Lyndee said...

Oh tear! That describes it perfectly! We love Jeff!

Jan said...

Thank You

JoAn Finter said...

Wow David, you have such a beautiful way of expressing all the feelings we share, what a great post, I hope you know David that your being there not only showed your love and concern for Jeff and all the family but it gave all of us strenth, there is great strenth in family and caring for one another. Thanks Dave we love you!

JoAn Finter said...

sorry I did mean to say STRENGTH!

Famous Amos said...

wow dave. family is truly the greatest strength through trials and our family is amazing.