1. I wasn’t going to church on Sunday. I was sick. Last minute I decided to go. Our “cantor,” who rarely sings a solo, sang a solo. And it was my favorite song: “When peace like a river attendeth my way…” We sang it at my folks’ funerals and at one of my sister’s. I choked up, stifled sobs, leaned over, and whispered to Marv, “I want her to sing this at your memorial.” He nodded. After church, I asked her. She said, “I’ll make it happen.”
  2. We had hospice in and out all week—two nurses, one social worker, one chaplain, two delivery people. All listened to us, asked us our stories. One nurse identified strongly with Marv’s lifelong interest in health care for children, especially those in special education. What are the odds of that strong connection?
  3. We met with an accountant and a lawyer. Both were sensitive to our situation. Both are expediting whatever has to be done. They know time is important.
  4. My hair cut turned out. Yeah, I know. This isn’t the most serious thing. But I haven’t found the exactly right hair dresser here, and I greatly miss my gal in Chicago. But, going in, I just said to God, “You are making everything smooth here, so I’m confident this will go well too.” And it did. And I hope that doesn’t sound too flip or sacrilegious to you, but that’s just the way this adventure has been going.
  5. My daughter had booked massages for both of us the minute we said we were coming home from AZ. Marv’s was last week, mine this week. The therapist said little until the massage was over and I was leaving. She said, quietly, “Your husband told me he’s at peace and he’s ready. May I give you’re a hug?” After we hugged, she said, “I’ll be praying for you. And you know I’m at Prairie (cancer) Center almost every day, so when you’re there, feel free to look me up.”
  6. When I left the Fitness Center where the massage therapist works, the receptionist motioned me over: “I know what you’re going through. We are all praying for you here.”
  7. I had started contacting writers I’d just met to see if they were interested in forming a writing group. I still miss my Chicago group, and it’s taken this long for me to find writers here. I called a meeting, all three came, all were very interested, and we’ve set meeting dates.
  8. Our car arrived from AZ! We were never so happy to see the driver show up. When

    one happy camper!

    we’d left in a hurry, our son had made arrangements to find a company that could pick it up at a place he’d arranged to leave it.

  9. And, adding one more of the many God sightings this week: last Sunday, a church we attended nearly twenty years ago had a note in their bulletin about Marv. This week he’s received lovely notes with memories of his work there many years ago.

Lastly, Marv feels well and, Lord willing, we’ll travel next week and make a final hug tour to MI and IL for him to say good-bye to family and friends. We’ll have the hospice phone numbers with us, the Comfort Kit, and the portable oxygenator, just in case. Hospice tells us he may do well for a while, but then there will be a turn that won’t last long.

Our son will fly in from Seattle to Chicago and make the trip home with us to Sioux Falls. We will be surrounded by love.

And, of course, we will be in God’s hands.


1950: Marv sits next to his mother. His two older brothers have passed away.