• Diane Mack: Heaven reaches out to old and young

  • I took a quick trip back east to check on my parents. My heart breaks for both of them.

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  • I took a quick trip back east to check on my parents. My heart breaks for both of them.
    Daddy is eight years out from his stroke. Mom is seven years out from the day my sisters and brother brought him home from the nursing facility.
    Mom has been the main caregiver. She has aged twice as fast as my father. They are both in their late 80s.
    On one of the days I was there, my dad had a bad seizure. I’m glad I was with mom when it happened. Seizures are terrible. The fact that he is paralyzed and can’t really talk or eat is bad enough.
    I held daddy’s hand and sang to him a children’s song. There isn’t much else one can do other than keep them safe.
    On the days that followed the seizure, daddy was exhausted, talkative, sleepy then agitated, which is apparently the day-to-day routine following his seizures. My sister Lindy mentioned there is a pattern.
    In the few days I was at my parents’ house, I know daddy could see and feel family who had passed on. He’d jabber and smile, looking up toward the ceiling.
    I have no doubt that daddy’s family is impatiently waiting for him in heaven, especially his mom. Daddy was 9 when his mother died.
    Saying goodbye was rough. However, I was headed to Ohio to see my daughter Kortney and attend her baby shower. That was a happy thing to keep focused on while driving.
    At the last moment, daughter Ashley, who lives in Idaho, decided to fly into Ohio for the shower. And Ashley was going to bring Brooke, her 18-month-old.
    I was getting really excited! To see two daughters and two granddaughters together is genuine happiness.
    The drive across the Pennsylvania Turnpike and onto Interstate 70 went fast, however not fast enough. Ashley’s plane landed and I was still 20 minutes down the interstate from Kortney’s house.
    When I arrived and saw those two cute little granddaughters together, I could hardly contain myself. It was also great seeing Ashley and Kortney together.
    The sisters had shared bunk beds for 15 years. And today they live 2,000 miles apart.
    Anyway, the end of my story … I had given each granddaughter, both Brooke and Camille, the same doll at Christmas. One had blonde hair, for Brooke, and one was a brunette, which was Camille’s.
    To say the least, Brooke’s doll was a little soiled from three older brothers who played with it, not that the dirt mattered to Brooke.
    Camille’s doll looked clean and well kept (probably because of her dentist it-has-to-be-clean daddy).
    Well, from the first moment together, the two girls switched dolls. I thought it was just an error on their part, so I tried to switch them back when the girls were not looking.
    Page 2 of 2 - But I could not fool them, nor could their mommies. We tried to distract the girls and switch their dolls over and over again. It never worked.
    A few days later, Brooke took the brunette home to Idaho and Camille kept the blonde.
    There is no doubt in my mind that those two little girls knew each other before they were born. I’m sure they talked in heaven about meeting in Ohio one day and exchanging their dolls.
    I know heaven is a wonderful place, where loving family await our return.
    My daddy knows, as well as Brooke and Camille.
    Diane Mack is coordinator of Putting Families First, Jackson County’s Family Week Foundation. Email Diane at myfamilies@juno.com or visit www.jacksoncountyfamilyweek.org.

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