pair on a carousel

February 12, 2005

As we were about to leave the park this afternoon, my Grandpa got that mischievous look he gets on his face and he looked at me and asked how I’d like for him to take me on the carousel. We had been in the pavilion for my cousin’s 1st-year birthday party, which just happens to be next to our beautiful town carousel. Well, I truthfully could not think of a thing in this world that sounded so perfectly pleasant at the time, so I grinned back at him and told him that I would be honored to accompany him.
The woman at the ticket counter correctly assumed my grandfather would get the senior fare when he asked how much it would be for the 2 of us, and then she asked him how old I was—I took the liberty of piping in and telling her I was 25 (no special rate for me, in case you were wondering).
After some deliberation, I picked out a large mythological-looking horse and my grandpa somehow fit himself—all 6 foot 2 of him—onto a zebra next to me. As the carousel started to pick up speed I looked at PaCharley and laughed at the comical figure he made with his lanky, hunched over frame and brimmed hat cocked slightly to one side, as he playfully braced himself for the wild ride by gripping the zebra’s ears.
But then, I wasn’t laughing anymore—I was trying to hide my contorted expression as I fought back the squelched sobs that surged in my gut. I was, all of a sudden, absolutely terrified. I was begging God, pleading with Him, to somehow let me not see the natural course of life in this case. And I did manage to keep from making a scene, somehow fighting the urge to run and find a safe place to bawl like a child.
You see, we lost my great uncle to cancer this week, and then we had his funeral yesterday. And he and my grandfather were an awful lot alike—too much alike for my selfish heart’s comfort. So the terrifying association that hit today was telling of how I guess I am old enough now to start seeing the passing of those in my family who I know as an adult, rather than simply the way a child sees all the grown-ups in her life as, just that–grown-ups. But oh, how it hurts, natural and course-of-life though it may be, must be . . .

Abba Father

Blessed Jesus

Come and cheer us

Do be near us

Every Creature

Far and near

Give You praise for Your

Holy ways

I am Yours

Just as I am

Kindly made

Loved and framed

May I never

Not be true

Or be forgetful in

Praising You

Quiet me when

Restless I grow

Still my spirit

Tame my soul

Under Thy wings

Verily I fly

Watched for by Your

Xtra watchful eye

Yours I’ll be till

Zion is nigh