Right Where He Needs To Be

By , Bloomington, IL
Drops of water rolled down the window as I stared out at that damp June day in my parents white Sebring. The mist seemed to collide with everything in its reach as we grew nearer and nearer to a garden of sleeping bodies. The perfect day for an event such as this: a funeral. I hate funerals. I don’t want that to be the memory I get when I think of the person I lost. I want to think of the last great time I spent with that person. I looked forward and saw the grave site. It was big with rows of tomb stones and little vases of colorful flowers. I watched one family walk to a tomb stone, laughing and smiling. They stuck bright pink and blue flowers in a vase. Why would they even think about putting those bright flowers there on this day? Honestly, I was just envious. How did they manage to overcome such loss that they were laughing at their loved one’s grave. I glanced over at my brother, Skyler. His expression was unreadable. It scared me to see him like this. He’s usually the life of the party, but I couldn’t see what lie behind those restless eyes and I didn’t want to know.

We drove on and that same question that had been tormenting me for the past few days was still taking over my every thought, “How could He take my Grandpa away from us?” Anger and hurt boiled inside of me. This was the first time I had ever lost someone close to me and when I found out, it felt like I woke up from a long sleep. This isn’t the world I thought it was. God doesn’t care who he takes or how it will affect the people around that person. This is all a game to Him and it felt as though He was laughing at my pain.

I snapped back into reality when I heard my parents slam the car doors. We were here. My heart ached as I hoisted my body out of the car and followed my family numbly to the place where my Grandpa’s lifeless body lay. We all took our places around the coffin and when everyone was either sitting or standing, the preacher began his speech. I drowned him out, though. With my head in my hands and my eyes toward the wet grass; the boiling inside of me overflowed as hot tears streamed down my cheeks. When I finally looked up it was over and the one person that truly mattered was smiling down at me with tears etched on her face, Cierra, my best friend. I got myself up off the chair and we hugged with silent tears escaping from our eyes for what seemed like hours. When we finally parted, people were already leaving back to my Grandma’s house where a party would be held. Cierra and I walked back to my car and she hugged me again saying, “See you there.” That was it. That was all she said. That was all she needed to say, because she knew I was sick of hearing, “I’m sorry for your loss.” The only thing I wanted from her was to know I wasn’t alone.

When we arrived at the party, most of the people were already there eating and having a good time. There were no decorations, just people and tons of food. The rain was gone, thankfully, and the sun shown bright through the open windows. I walked up the pink puffy carpeted stairs of the bi-level home. Some invisible knife continuously stabbed my heart as I got closer to the party. It hurt so much to see my family there and know one person wouldn’t be there. He would never be there anymore. “I have to get use to this.” I told myself over and over again. It didn’t work. All I wanted was for everyone to just leave. I wanted to be by myself. I wanted to cry till there were no more tears left to spill.

Two familiar laughs broke through my thoughts and I turned around to see Jessie, my cousin, and Cierra. I had to smile. They could always light up a room. I ran over to them and we all hugged each other. For the rest of the party, I almost forgot why we were having it. The pain was close to completely gone and I was having more fun than I’d had in awhile. After the party, however, everything went back to the way it was. How it was at the funeral.

During the weeks that followed, everyone seemed in somewhat of a trance, only moving because they had to. The whole house seemed to be depressed. “It gets easier.” People say. That is completely false. The people who say that obviously have never lost someone. I spent most of my time alone in my room yelling words of hatred at the one I held responsible, God. He was the victim of my rage and He was at fault for everything. “I hate You.” Those three little words left my mouth one too many times and, at the time, I wasn’t sorry. After all, He caused all of it. One night I went to bed ending my rant with those same words. Little did I know, my whole perspective was about to change.

As I fell asleep, I entered a world of make believe where everything surreal made sense and there was no pain. I entered my dreams…

I walked down the hallway of a very familiar house, my Grandparent’s house. I could feel the puffy carpet underneath my feet. I drug my fingers along the nicotine stained wallpaper. I could feel the coarseness under my touch. I could feel everything and I could smell everything. This dream was so real. I didn’t know what to make of it. I moved slowly as a feeling of fear engulfed me. I was dreading to go further. I wasn’t sure why, but something was telling me to stop. I couldn’t stop, though. My feet had a mind of their own and I was continuously forced forward. I finally realized what was making me cringe. I was gradually making my way to my Grandpa’s room. I came to an abrupt stop as I got the sense someone was about to walk out of his room. I remember holding my breath, dreading whatever it was that was going to stand in my way. A person walked through the doorway. He didn’t have his oxygen tank, or his wooden leg. He was perfect. My Grandpa was perfect. He wore his favorite, a red plaid button up shirt with jeans. Strangely enough, that’s what we buried him in. Mixed feelings flew through me, mainly shock. We stood there staring at each other for the longest time, when I eventually found words. “You’re dead.” I said, instantly regretting it. He moved closer to me and laughed, the sound piercing me. All he said was, “No, I’m not.” Then it was all over.

I suddenly woke up, my breathing irregular and my heart racing. I had no idea what to make of my dream. I couldn’t fall asleep after that either, so I just lied there and thought about things. He was right, he wasn’t dead. He’ll always be there watching over me and I realized how wrong I was. God wasn’t at fault, and I was in no place to accuse Him. It was my Grandpas time to go. I’m not sure whether the dream was a sign or anything like that. It definitely changed me, though. After that night, I was a new person. I don’t think of death as a bad thing anymore. Just a new chapter in life and even though I’ll always miss my Grandpa; he’s right where he needs to be.





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