I had always heard the common word from people, good. I was a good kid. I had many friends at school and was liked by all of my teachers. It was always that I was a good person and that I did good things and I was always at the good places. The repetition of this word made me believe that nothing bad could ever happen to me. Then one night, something happened. I realized I was wrong. I believe bad things can happen to good people
It was around 2 o’clock in the morning. I was still a little tired. I would usually have complained for ten more minutes of sleep. This was not the time. I could hear the sadness in my mom’s voice. My mom told me to get up and that tonight was the night daddy would see Jesus. My dad had been sick for 6 months and was getting worse every day. I already knew he wasn’t going to make it; I received that news about a week ago.
I got up and walked behind my depressed mom. Once in the room, I laid down in my mom’s normal spot on the bed, while she went around the bed to the rocker and sat down. My dad was laying there, making was seemed to be a croaking sound. It sounded like a toad’s last croak before it died, weak and rough. My mom held his hand and told him that it was going to be okay and that he could pass on. I knew he was in pain from my mom holding his hand. Any contact with him caused him pain.
I must have dozed off because the next thing I could remember was hearing my name being called. I looked up expectantly at my mom. Miraculously, it wasn’t she that called me, it was my dad. He knew what I was going through, he knew the pain as if my heart was slowly ripping apart each minute I watched him suffer. He had not been able to speak a clear word for weeks now and he called my name as clear as day. The other miraculous part was that I was asleep and he was able to wake me up and say in his own way that there is no reason to be afraid.
The next two hours were in silence, besides the croaking noise. Nobody talked. My sister was in her room, too afraid to come into our parents’ bedroom. My mom was holding my dad’s hand. She was moving her thumb slowly and lightly over his boney hand. She looked up and saw my staring into space and the sad expression on my face. My mom got up and went over to the phone. She dialed a number and said in the phone after a few moments, “Hi Debbie, this is Marilyn Amento. I was wondering if you would be able to come over and help the kids.” She said it in a painful voice that seemed that at any moment she would break out sobbing. My mom looked at me and told me to get Julie and bring her downstairs into the living room to wait for Mrs. Debbie, a friend of the family from our church.
At around 4 o’clock, Mrs. Debbie arrived and we sat in the living room. She was comforting us and saying that my dad was going to a better place and that no more pain would come to him. I was selfish. I didn’t want him to leave, and I wanted him to get better. I knew that I wasn’t prepared to for this heavy loss.
While my sister, Mrs. Debbie and I were sitting in the living room, we had a miracle happen. With nobody else besides us three downstairs, we saw the lights of the kitchen go on. They stayed on for about five minutes. After those lights went out, the lights in the dining room turned on almost immediately. The same thing happened to the family room, bathroom and office area. Mrs. Debbie told us that it was Jesus looking for daddy. That was the sign that the time was soon to come and I would not have a father anymore.
I ran upstairs and held my dad’s hand. I lay on the pillow next to him and watched him. His breathing was rough; his skin was thin and his bones were visible through his skin. About thirty minutes later, he said my name one last time. The light illuminated the room for a quick second and went away; I felt the effort in his hand go away and fall to the mattress, making the loudest echo that I would ever hear.