Waiting for Paradise

We went to Hospice House for dinner Friday to be together as a family.  Out of respect for Grandpa, I am not going to share images of him, just the family around him, holding his hands and just murmering their love and affirmation of a life well lived.


It’s so hard to see someone you love slowly, painfully die.

Not really here, but not gone to Paradise either.

His head tilts back as he lays in bed, his eyes open and shut, but do not see.  His breathing raspy, gurgling actually.  He doesn’t talk much anymore, except….except on Wednesday, when I lifted the children up, one by one to kiss his forehead and say hi in his ear, his breathing changed, excited breaths followed by an exhaled HIIIIIII.  Oh so faint, so soft we almost missed it.  Again tonight, he said it to us except we were blessed to hear his whispered voice three times Hi, Hi, Hi….

{Instant tears}

 “Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.”

—2 Corinthians 4:16–18

A brave Papa fighting cancer, an oh so special Great Grandpa in Hospice, an adopted, and well loved “Gramma” Esther in another state, also in hospice waiting for Jesus to take her home, dying of the same cancer our Papa is fighting so hard against….so many loved ones on their way to Jesus.  And it’s my job to comfort my little ones, and answer their questions with accuracy and honesty.  In simple, but real terms to bring comfort in the truth of death.

But isn’t it funny, how sometimes THEY bring comfort to us, with their innocent understanding of life, death and a new life in Heaven.


  Avery is so excited for Grandpa to have new “bendy legs”. His old childhood injury, a smashed ankle turned rod in the leg, has given him a lifetime of pain.  She knew new legs would be a special part of his Heavenly body.  Paxton was most excited that he’d “Wun wiff Jesus!” {run with Jesus} The older two, quietly taking it all in, their thoughts kept quiet as they prepare to say good-bye to a Grandpa who was a big part of their lives and weekly routine.


   But we know, good bye is never really good bye, not when you have the hope of Jesus.  Good-bye is really just “So long for now”…..

And so we wait, life feeling like its holding it’s breath, anticipating yet dreading the day we get “the call” that he has gone.  Until then, we ask Jesus to ease his pain and take him home soon.

Because this Earth is NOT our home.

  *I wrote this post not knowing that the day I wrote it,  Friday, April 26th at 10:45pm, my sweet Grandpa would get to see his Jesus in Glory.  My mom and my Grandma each held a hand as he went.

  So long for now, Grandpa.

So long for now…….

No more sorrow, no more pain.

I sure do love you. 


  I also want to add, that this morning {Saturday} soon after 7, our beloved Gramma Esther went to see Jesus too.  She had been talking of a “reunion” she was planning all week!  Praise God her time of suffering is over, and she is in Paradise with my Grandpa and many others who have gone before them. What a REUNION!



24 thoughts on “Waiting for Paradise

  1. As we say in Greek… “May his light be eternal”. I have just lost my mother a month ago… I know it is a difficult time. I pray healing prayers for your family, as it is a void in our “Normal” Life. Now we have to find the New “Normal”

  2. Oh sweet daughter, though I was there for every moment you captured, I have tears streaming down my face as I read the last hours of my dearly loved daddy’s life.You have a way of capturing life’s precious moments so well…moments that will hold dear memories in my heart and mind for years to come. Thank you Tonya..Just like the words of the book by Robert Munsch, “I’ll love you forever, I’ll love you for always, as long as I’m living my baby you’ll be.”

  3. My Father passed away one year ago April 26th in Hospice. He had Dementia, but it was similar scenario as your Grandpa. I feel your pain, but they are gone to heave, but not forgotten. My Dad went to meet Mom, who passed away in 2007.

  4. You are in my thoughts and prayers this week Tonya. I know how hard it is to say “So long for now”. But, it is so wonderful to know that they are both not in any pain any more and that they are walking and talking with out LORD today!!! It is so much easier to say good-bye to a Christian then it is a NonChristian.
    Send my love and hugs your way today sweet friend,

  5. So sorry for your pain in losing your loved ones, but I know you have the peace of seeing them again in Paradise when your journey on this Earth is complete. My prayers are with you as you say “see you later” over the upcoming days. Sending lots of hugs!

  6. I’m very sorry for your loss 😦 It’s so hard to lose a loved one! Thank goodness we can all be reunited in Heaven!! We’re praying for you & your family.

  7. My Dad joined Jesus in heaven last October 29th. Your blog today is making me cry again, because, although we know they are in a better place, we miss them very much! My Dad is driving his brand new semi in heaven…

  8. So sorry for your loss. I lost my mom to cancer in January, and just like you said here your children become your shield. My son, now 17 months old, was my strength and shield. My mom was only in hospice for 3 days, before finishing her journey and joining my dad who passed 2 years prior. I hope you continue to find peace and comfort in both losses.

  9. What a precious post! What a joy to know we’ll meet them again and they are no longer in pain. I think you are doing one fine job of talking with your precious children about the reality of death, and heaven. Praying for you and your family and know God’s amazing grace is covering you every moment. Thanks for sharing this very personal time of your lives. Much love to you all. XO

  10. Praying over you and your family in this difficult time. As Christians we know that when a loved one who loves Jesus passes it’s also a time of celebration for them. However, it doesn’t make the hurt and pain of missing them fade completely. I pray the Holy Spirit embraces you and your family with His peace, comfort, and strength. So very sorry for your loss and the pain that comes with that, but I rejoice with you that your loved ones are in heaven dancing with Jesus.

  11. Your post made me cry…such a sweet story and I love all the love and sweetness that is showing through your children. I know your grandparents are in heaven and celebrating with all the angels and in the presence of our Lord. I will be lifting you all up in prayer for peace and comfort this week.

  12. What a beautiful, beautiful tribute to an amazing child of God, man, father, and husband. He leaves behind a legacy of love! What a glorious reunion indeed!!

  13. What a lovely story. I wish we had pictures like this of our family before my Papaw passed in October. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family as your mourn these loses. I’m in tears.

  14. Beautiful. Just beautiful. Your post reminds me so much of when my family “kept watch” as my dad was on his way Home. Our son, now 21, had just turned 8. He was baffled at our tears because “Poppy gets to go to heaven to live with Jesus!”. He was so excited for his poppy. It was such precious time for our family, drawing closer to Him. God uses these times of refining to polish His children.
    We’ll be praying for all of you.
    “Precious in the sight of the LORD [is] the death of his saints.” Psalm 116: 15

  15. Love you Tonya and all your family. I know your strength in God will continue to brace your hearts through the continued journey of letting go. Blessings and love to you all.

  16. I am so very sorry for your loss! I was already in tears by the time I finished reading this post, but the picture of his sweet face really set me off. My thoughts and prayers are with you and yours.

  17. Sometimes it’s easier to give them up than to keep them here. I pray God will give your family peace, comfort and even happiness in the home going of your family members.

  18. Tonya we have only spoken by text and will meet soon. I bet Grandpa met my mom Carole when he got to heaven. Her suffering with dementia and terminal Cancer ended here in our home on Dec 23rd. I now know she is with my dad and brother. As hard as it was to let go, they are all pain free and together now. God bless you and your family. Thank you for sharing peace with me.

  19. I have tears while reading this. I am glad that you have Jesus to sustain you through this. It is SO SO hard. As I spend each day with my dying husband I pray to have this kind of strength when it is time to let him go.

  20. I will keep you and your family in my prayers today..
    I took a few days off of the computer and missed this I’m so sorry for your loss!

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