For those left behind…

tattoo-larryClose friends for almost 50 years; Our kids called them Uncle Larry and Aunt Jan:

conservative midwesterners,
passionate believers,
straight arrows

came to town for a visit and a 50th Central College reunion,
and our family gathered to spend Sunday with these special more-than-friends.

tattoo-JanBut something was different.
To quote their daughter’s text: “Holy #@! Mom got a tattoo!”
So did Dad.

 

Granddaughter Tara:

top of the class, serious about studies
playful, articulate
a bright light, loved and cherished

made one last turn and her car was hit
at high speed by the car of a young man
trying to elude police.

Now Tara’s bright light is in heaven, shining with the saints;
her last turn brought her to a hew home—in heaven with Jesus.

And the hole here on earth—deep, dark shadows in our hearts—
is an ongoing pain of missing one so loved,
her chair empty at the family table.

When someone dies the missing goes deeper than mere emotion—
ethereal and hard to grasp.
It’s a physical ache:

for a touch, a hug,
a glimpse of her sunshine smile,
a hand to hold, her scent,
her whole being—no longer touchable.

In the same way, it’s more than a tattoo.
It’s a physical expression that the whole family wears,
a physical memory of Tara—her favorite “name-doodle.”

Tara’s in heaven,
and Tara’s still here,
a part of every member of the family.

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