On Monday, September 24, I had never experienced the loss of a grandparent. My Grandfather Morgan and my Grandma Marie Byrd died before I arrived in this world. They each left their own legacy to me, but I did not experience the pain of their passing.
Last Tuesday, September 25, my G'ma Byrd, who my G'pa had married before I was born, and who was the only G'ma Byrd I've ever had the honor of knowing personally, died in the wee hours of the morning. The grief of her passing was intense. She the first G'ma I've ever lost, but much more painful is the fact that as far as we know she resisted God until her last moment of awareness. I was going to write more about that, but can't seem to do it...
Thursday afternoon, September 27, my G'pa Byrd went home to be with Jesus. We knew that he wasn't long for this world, but I was still surprised that it was so soon. An amazing thing is that he was never consciously aware that G'ma was gone... not even that she was out of their room. And yet he was somehow released from his hanging on to take care of G'ma. Here's what I posted to EBCAlumni.net that afternoon (blogspot wouldn't let me in):
My Grandpa Byrd went home to be with Jesus this afternoon. It's amazing how differently I feel about his passing than I feel about Grandma's two days ago. While I'm sad and have shed quite a few tears, there is such peace and joy for him, knowing that he is with his Savior - no more pain, no more tears. Here's one of my favorite pictures of my G'pa and G'ma Byrd. This is on the front porch of their home in the Smoky Mountains.
My G'pa and G'ma were so very precious to me. I know that I am still processing and working through their passing, and it's probably a sign of progress that I'm finally able to write a little about it.
Here are links to their obituary pages - G'pa and G'ma Byrd. Much loved. Much missed.