Greg's parents both passed away before he and I got together. I never had the privilege to know them in a physical aspect. But I have gotten to know them through the eyes of my husband, my inherited daughters, my sister-in-laws and many of Greg's, now mine too, Aunts, Uncles and cousins. I often see a reflection of Grace and Richard in each one of them. They were both so young they didn't get to see some of their dreams come to fruition. They missed graduations, weddings, births and so much more. However, their legacy still shines bright in this family
Knowing that death is inevitable for each of us I brought up the concept of the bucket list. I asked Greg to share about the things he wanted to accomplish before he died. I smiled and laughed a little when he said he wanted to get a car. And promptly I replied, "You should absolutely get a new car." After all the sacrificing he did for all of the kids and me throughout the years he should, at least, get a new car.
His list continued to grow with some silly and not so silly items. It was clear that he had been thinking a lot about his "bucket list". Places he wants to see, things he wants to do, and little chores to accomplish. But the most important things were deeply routed in his heart. He told me that when Ashley graduated from high school he wished so deeply that his Dad, Ashley's Pop-pop, was able to share in that moment. "Pop-pop would have been so proud of you, Ash" he remembered telling her after she received her diploma. With tear filled eyes he said, "I really want to be there for my grandchildren when they graduate from high-school so I can tell them I am proud". Most of all he just wants to be there for the important things.
He asked me to share my thoughts about my list. I don't have many things on my bucket list. My silly and not so important items; write a book, draw again, and have a few great adventures with my loves. But, just like my "better half", it's the things of the heart that are truly at the core of my list.
There is one thing I know for sure. I know that I won't live forever. And God has a better "bucket list" a.k.a plan in mind (Jeremiah 29:11). When God chooses to bless me with a new day I want to reflect on the core items. I pray that my husband, children, family, friends and future members know, even when we seem disconnected, how deeply I love them. My hearts desire is to know that my family feels God's love. And that I, as His servant, can and will be a true reflection of His amazing grace. And I pray that when I do "kick the bucket" that an abundance of love spills out and spreads far.
"Search me, O God, and know my heart; try me and know my anxious thoughts; and see if there be any hurtful way in me, and lead me in the everlasting way"~Psalm 139: 23-24