I loved my father. My father’s name was Wilmer Wellington Carter and he was a true provider for our family.
Dad was into getting wisdom and knowledge as he read a lot of books. He always said that the Bible was the most important one and to start there first, to fear God was the beginning of wisdom and knowledge.
My father was older, so we didn’t play sports and roughhouse, instead, we learned about every animal in the encyclopedia. I fell in love with dinosaurs, and knew the names of just about all of them and I still remember just about all of them to this day. (I’ve won a few Jeopardy categories on dinosaurs and prehistoric animals more than once)
My father was my life growing up as he could do no wrong and I looked to him for everything. I didn’t have many fears, but I had one that filled me with dread — the day my father would die. I remember a few times being in tears at the thought of it but, it would pass and I’d go about my childhood.
After I graduated from high school and was going to junior college, my Dad had to have a triple bypass. It brought those fears back, coursing through every inch of my body. Our family was shaken, but we are believers and God hears prayers. I still remember going into the living room and having a one-on-one with God.
He survived the surgery and went on to do the things he loved to do: cleaning up the yard, taking us everywhere we needed to go (Dad was a chauffeur for the family), cooking, reading, watching baseball games and talking about God and all his side theories.
In my mid 20s, a lot of things happened within my father’s orbit: his first wife passed away, his grandson and my nephew died in a motorcycle accident and he started getting sick more often. After going to the doctor, they said he had congestive heart failure, which was a misdiagnosis — he actually had cancer.
By the time we found out that he had cancer, it was already everywhere, but we are believers and God hears prayers. They put him on hospice care and we decided to bring him home instead. A nurse came out to check on him, if I remember correctly, once or twice a week. My older siblings, who lived in the valley, basically moved back home or commuted, and we all took care of Dad.
At this point, my Dad was almost in a coma-like state, but still alive and he would open his eyes from time-to-time. One day, I was in the shower, laughing and screaming, because the water heater went out, so I had to take a cold shower. Two of my sisters, my niece and I were home at the time and my Mom and other sister were out taking care of some business.
My niece came to my bathroom door, I could see her, but she couldn’t speak for some reason. My sister came behind her and told me she thought that Dad went on to be with the Lord.
And here it is. The darkest day in my life realized.
But, here comes Jesus. (To Be Continued)