In June, it will be 37 years ago that I met Fred, and 35 years ago that we got married. That is a lot of years of memories! A booklet on grief gave the idea of writing down memories, one-liners of the loved one who died. I tend to be a person who lives in the future–always thinking ahead to what is coming next, what needs to be done, what I can’t forget, so I usually don’t dwell on memories. But, this is a whole new “ball game!” How can I not remember when Fred’s presence is still felt in every inch of our house, when I interact with our children and grandchildren, when I serve in the church where we served together for so many years. Our lives were intertwined and we lived and worked as a team.

Here are a few memories:

–Thursdays were our day off. For years now, we went out to breakfast and sat and talked each Thursday morning.

–Most recently, we joined a gym together. I loved the time to talk in the car on the way there and the way home and also working on fitness together.

–Praying together and deep, rich conversations about what we were learning from God were a normal part of our lives.

–Each year we went away for a few days together alone. When the children were small, it was often only one night and a lot of work to make the time away happen, but these get-aways did wonders for our marriage.

–Our home has open doors for people. I have no idea how many people have sat around our table for a meal over the years. Fred didn’t just expect me to do the work by myself. He helped me with the grocery shopping and although I am the cook in the family, he was willing to wash, peel, chop, or whatever needed doing. Then (especially on Sunday mornings) he would send me off to get ready while he cleaned up the kitchen.

–Laughter was a big part of our lives. Our children often said that we laughed at each other a lot and I think that is true. But, laughter makes life easier!

–Music has always been a huge part of my life. Fred didn’t think of listening to music except for occasionally having Kassandra’s piano music playing in the background while he worked at his computer. However, the last few months of his life, we listed to music together while we cried and clung to God. Fred’s favorite song was “It Is Well with My Soul.” The last few months, we often ended our prayers together by saying, “it is well, with our souls.”

Yes, God, it is well with my soul, and I thank You for memories!

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