My prayers go out to my Aunt Gloria, who lost her beloved husband of 20-something years, Bruce, on Wednesday. This photo was taken when we stayed with them for a night on our California trip last May. I remember it as being such a relaxing, peaceful stay, and that was due a lot to what a good couple Gloria and Bruce were. She told me on the phone last night that her marriage to him was by far the happiest time of her life. They loved to travel and have been all over the world. They would have gone to Hawaii next month to celebrate their anniversary.
I didn't know Bruce's health had been failing, so I was completely taken off guard when my dad called me last night with the news. (Strangely, my dad's Aunt Dottie, whom I never knew, also died this week, and he heard about both deaths within the same hour.) Bruce had diabetes and heart problems, and things had gotten worse in the past few weeks. A week before he died, Gloria told me, she went outside and prayed before bed, like she always does, asking God to give her a little more time with him. Tuesday night, she thanked God for that time and told him she was ready if he needed to take Bruce. She went upstairs, and Bruce, lying in bed with a catheter in him, held her in a hug for an especially long time. The next morning, he was gone. He died in his sleep, peacefully. Gloria said it was a blessing that he did not have to suffer or go to a hospital and that she is so happy about that. Still, his loss is terribly sad, and I know she will be grieving for a very long time.
Gloria, I know you read this blog, so you know that Steve and I send our love to you and your family. As you said, there is no doubt that Bruce is in heaven right now, and I am certain he will be near you always.