I Saw Mr. Robert Today

by Sherry Riter in Dad,Gran-Gran,Health

I am going to share something extremely personal. I was vacillating between writing it or not writing it, but I feel the need to forever record these moments.

Dad’s doctor called me today. Each of his words exploded in my brain and left holes in my heart.

I almost couldn’t listen and yet, I knew this information was necessary…

“…finding a way to make it more comfortable for him.”

“…with dignity…”

“The same cancer found in his lung is in his pelvis…”

“The cancer has deteriorated the bones in his hip…”

“His entire body has cancer.”

He was a kind man on the other end of the phone and I felt his compassion. When the call was over, I softly hung up the phone almost as if I didn’t want to disturb the painful numbness surrounding my body.

I thought about the email my mother had written to me that started with “I’m sorry that you have to experience this pain” and after a beautifully written email, ended “Call me if you need me. I love you.”

So I called her and we talked for a little while as I tried to find solace.

There was none.

I wanted to hear Dad’s voice, so I called him hoping he was not asleep.

“Hi Dad!”


“I’m sorry you’re hurting,” and I desperately held in the sob that was threatening to burst out.


“Dad, I heard you and Mom had a party today.”

“I wouldn’t really call it a party.”

We both chuckled and then he said, “I saw Mr. Robert today.”

I froze.

My grandfather’s name was Gran-Gran to me, but everyone else called him Mr. Robert. My dad and Gran-Gran were very close and spent many happy hours together playing basketball, watching television and so many other things. Of course, that was a long time ago because my grandfather has passed away.

I said, “You saw Gran-Gran?”

I could hear him smile suddenly recognizing what he just told me as he said, “Mr. Robert’s dead, isn’t he?”

“Yes Dad.”

“That’s not a good sign, is it?” he asked with a slight chuckle.

“If you see Gran-Gran any time soon Dad, make sure the two of you talk to Jesus about me being with you both.”

“You’re not going to have a problem,” he said matter-of-factly.

“I love you Dad.”

“I love you.”

My Dad is going to die.

I will have to live the rest of my life without him.

I don’t want him to die.

I know many of my readers probably do not believe in Jesus Christ or an afterlife and I’m not trying to convince you otherwise. I have found a sense of peace knowing that Gran-Gran will be there when Dad steps out of his very sick body.

Maybe it was Heavenly Father’s way of providing me with comfort.

I still don’t want him to hurt…or die.

Jesus carrying the lamb

Praying that Jesus will carry my Dad through this trial,

The Redhead Riter

This post was written by...

Sherry Riter is also known as The Redhead Riter. Sherry is witty, intelligent and addictive as she writes about cooking, family, marriage, failures, blogging tips, art, humor, inspiration, travel, PTSD and aging. Her goal is to inspire, motivate, educate and to make her audience laugh. Sherry embraces being a redhead and helps others to see the redhead point of view…"In some eras redheads were worshipped while others thought us witches. Personally, I like the former and think every day is 'Love a redhead day!'" She can also be found on Facebook, Google+, Pinterest, StumbleUpon, Linkedin, tweeting as @TheRedheadRiter and you can subscribe to her free blog feed.

{ 29 comments… read them below or add one }

1 La Tea Dah August 18, 2010 at 2:10 am

I am so sorry. I have been through this emotional time with my own mother. Although there was great sadness, there was also comfort in going through the steps with her. I hope you find that same comfort. May God give you strength.


2 Mom of M&Ms August 18, 2010 at 2:17 am

Honey< Jesus is carrying him right now…And HE is carrying you now tightly in his arms.LOving you and holding you through this Valley!


3 theTsaritsa August 18, 2010 at 2:34 am

I'm really sorry to read this, and I can't imagine what you're feeling, but I think Gran-Gran's appearance could be a sign of hope. My thoughts are with you.


4 Jeanettec August 18, 2010 at 2:53 am

I'm so sorry about your dad. I know what it's like to have a love one in that situation. My brother. All you want is for them not to suffer anymore, but then that means you'll have to let them go. Stay strong and remember, God doesn't give us any more than we can handle.

I'll add your dad, you and your family to my prayer list.


This song came to mind after I read your post. I hope it brings you some comfort.

We shall behold the lamb of God
sitting on the throne.
No more crying, no more weeping
toubles will be gone.
There'll be joy forever more.
When we reach that other shore.
~ The Other Shore by Luther Barnes & the Redd Budd Choir


5 Life's Essentials August 18, 2010 at 3:00 am

I am SO sorry to hear this!! I totally understand your feelings!!! I lost my father several years ago.

I am praying for you and your family as you go through this painful experience!!


6 Sherry August 18, 2010 at 3:06 am

I am so glad you have the comfort that Christ alone can give. I lost my Dad to cancer 6 years ago and knowing that Jesus was there with him made all the difference.


7 Tyla August 18, 2010 at 3:35 am

Praying for you and your family.

"Those who live in the Lord will never see each other for the last time."

God bless you.


8 ruthy ann August 18, 2010 at 3:42 am

The Lord is close to the broken hearted. Sending prayers your way.


9 bluecottonmemory August 18, 2010 at 3:45 am

Oh, Red! What a wonderful conversastion – what a wonderful memory to hold close. We went through the same thing in January with my awesome Father-in-Law. It is a journey on a path that feels different than any other traveled. But there is something God-In-Filling about helping that person cross over to the other side – when God calls them to that side. And, it felt for a time like we were in a different realm – and I think our angels were holding us, comforting us, strengthening us to help him and help those around us that needed a lot of help.
I find so much peace, so much hope, like David who said, "He can no longer come to me, but I can go to him" (paraphrased or awfully close to the quote) – with my grandparents, friends, and the littel girl we lost half-way through our pregnancy – it carries me!

You expressed so beautifully your struggle. You have been blessed with a very special memory:)


10 unicyclerose August 18, 2010 at 4:28 am

God is so gracious, isn't He? You are at a crossroads, hang in there, these are tough times…..


11 Marlene August 18, 2010 at 4:32 am

Still praying…..

Hope you're shopping for plane tickets. Spend time with him now while he can still enjoy it.


12 ARS August 18, 2010 at 4:41 am

I can't imagine … my heart is with you.


13 Carolyn Ward August 18, 2010 at 5:20 am

Oh what a sad sad day for you. I am so sorry.


14 French Country Cottage August 18, 2010 at 5:23 am

I am so so sorry for what you are going through. My thoughts are with you and your family and I will say a prayer for you.


15 Kristi August 18, 2010 at 12:45 pm

I can't seem to formulate any words other than, I'm sorry you have to go through this. Still praying for you and your family.


16 confused homemaker August 18, 2010 at 12:58 pm

I am offering prayers for you & your father. May you both be comforted in the Lord during this time.


17 Brittany August 18, 2010 at 2:35 pm

Oh my goodness, I'm sobbing right now! I am praying for you and your family!


18 Jules August 18, 2010 at 3:29 pm

I've come to realize or believe God sends a friendly face for us and it helps with the pain.

My prayers are sent with heart felt concern.

Trying To Get Over The Rainbow


19 Sylace August 18, 2010 at 3:32 pm

Thank you for writing about that and sharing it. Seeing Mr. Robert was a wonderful sign, a promise of the afterlife, kind of like the promise of a rainbow. It helps everyone when you share your experiences.



20 Lori August 18, 2010 at 3:43 pm

Thoughts and prayers are with you, your dad, and your family. I lost my mom back in 1996. My husband was TDY in Korea. Since Hospice was called in my husband was able to immediately fly home. We were to leave very early Tues morning to fly to FL to be with my mom, but she passed Monday evening. I hold on to my memories very tightly as well as that Monday evening when my Mom came to me to say good-bye.

I'll hold you close in my prayers.


21 Karen Peterson August 18, 2010 at 4:34 pm

I'm so sorry for what you're going through right now. I have no doubt that your gran-gran is waiting, excited to welcome his son back home. I hope you can find some peace and comfort through this time.


22 Vicky August 18, 2010 at 5:21 pm

I'm so sorry… I lost my dad just a month ago and the pain is still raw and fresh. My best advice right now is to lean in… I know it hurts, I know the shock, the anger, the numbness, the pain… but lean in with all you can muster… you will find the strength.

I had mourning doves build a nest in my front yard… we all knew… but the night he left, God blazed a trail straight up to heaven with the most amazing sunset ever… the sunset was even in the news it was so spectacular.

God is with you, peace be with you 🙂 My prayers are with you.


23 Unplanned Cooking August 18, 2010 at 6:40 pm

I am so sorry. I can't imagine the pain you must be going through right now. I am glad that your dad is finding his peace through Mr. Robert. I hope that you soon are able to find yours too.


24 Pretty Things August 18, 2010 at 6:54 pm

I just stumbled across your blog and this post and I am so incredibly sorry. I'll keep you and your family in my thoughts.


25 bernicewood August 18, 2010 at 8:57 pm

Ahh Redhead, what an awesome conversation! I lost my father 4 years ago, and we had never been close, but I was all he had left, so we did draw closer, and I was there the last year and a half. I know it is a hard road, but enjoy what time you have, go see him if you can. Let him tell you stories of 'when he was a kid' over and over… and YOU have the awesome talent to write them down!
Prayers and Hugs….


26 Susan August 18, 2010 at 9:16 pm

I know how you feel. My father passed away 2 years ago. I actually cried more before he died than when the actual event occurred. Because I believe in the afterlife, I felt great joy at his passing because I knew he was finally pain-free, and that he was greeting old family members and friends who had gone before him. Heavenly Father will carry you through this time, and one day, you will see him and your Gran-Gran again.


27 Teresha@Marlie and Me August 19, 2010 at 12:18 pm

I don't know what to say to comfort you. I wish I could hug you in person. My prayers are with you and your Dad. I hope Alyssa is doing okay.


28 Doreen Lombardo August 19, 2010 at 11:12 pm

I'm so sorry. Your post made me cry. I can't imagine what you are going through. May you find comfort with your family and friends.


29 Jerry August 21, 2010 at 1:27 pm

My mother-in-law — 94 years old — is in the last stages in her life and lives with us. She routinely talks to visitors that we can't see. Perhaps they are welcoming her.


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