A New Body

It made many trips down I-40 from Tahlequah to Pampa.  It rode in the passenger seat of a red dodge pickup and when that vehicle wore out, a yellow Chevy pickup. 

When he died, it rode in the back of my vehicle one last time along with the potted plants sent with condolences and a couple of cardboard boxes of belongings.

When we arrived home, it sat in the floor of the spare bedroom right behind the door.  I couldn’t bring myself to throw it away.  I went about my day-to-day life and when I found time, I sorted through the cardboard boxes that had made the trip,  discarding unnecessary things.  But still, it remained. 

When the spare bedroom began changing into a nursery, it sat on the floor watching while paint went on the walls, and office furniture was replaced with a crib.  Like a child’s teddy bear with the eye missing and the stuffing coming out, it remained as a reminder.   

It wasn’t valuable.  It wasn’t decorative.  It wasn’t useful to anyone.  But it was such a part of him that I kept it around.  It’s funny how when someone dies, their everyday things become such strong reminders of them.  For my grandmother, it was a silver fingernail file that sat beside her chair.  She probably used it every day.  For my dad, it was a grimy, white Easter basket he used to carry his medication.  An Easter basket.  While other men have a satchel or a tote, or even a gallon size Ziploc bag, my dad used an Easter basket. 

“Take one daily with a meal.”  “For management of high cholesterol, take one each day.”  “Take each morning and evening.”  The instructions on each bottle kept him going for several years.  High blood pressure, cholesterol, blood thinners, aspirin.

When New Year’s Day 2012 rolled around, sadness overcame me.  A new year, a new beginning, only without him.  Moving ahead, moving on, I knew I must.  But I didn’t know how.  And then I was reminded: 

“For instance, we  know that when these bodies of ours are taken down like tents and folded away, they will be replaced by resurrection bodies in heaven—God-made, not handmade—-and we’ll never have to relocate our “tents” again.” 2 Corinthians 5:1 The Message

My dad no longer needed his pills.  It was just a sad reminder to me of the temporary body that burdened him.

“For we walk by faith, not by sight.  We are confident, yes, well pleased rather to be absent from the body and to be present with the Lord.” 2 Corinthians 5:7 

On Monday January 2, I carried the basket to the dumpster and set it in.  Don’t think I didn’t consider taking it out and bringing it back in the house throughout the day.  I was home on Tuesday, the 3rd, when the loud roar of the trash truck pulled up.  I heard the lifting of the dumpster, the bang of the lids as it flipped over.  I imagined the dirty Easter basket and the bottles of pills scattering as they fell.  I sat on the couch as the truck roared away, thinking of my dad and his new body.  No longer sick.  No longer burdened.

Today, he would’ve been 69 years old.  He left this world February 26, 2011.

He is dancing. 

Happy Birthday, Dad. 

I love you.


  1. Holes says:

    Thank you, Angel! Sometimes I get lost in my grief and I forget the glorious life he’s living.


    1. Jolea says:

      lol…I suppose auto correct changed my name…:)


  2. Donna Mae Jones says:

    that is the best…u have a way of making things better i am honored to know u and to get to read what u write…i will always miss ur dad and i a thankful he is no longer in pain…i will see him someday again…and i will dance with him…just like in my dream…love u baby girl…


    1. Angel says:

      Thanks for always having wonderfully kind words to say to me.


  3. leonbriggs says:

    I know Jolea’s new name, lol. I see there’s a label in there and I don’t think it says Niagra 🙂 great blog sis.

    Jody says she misses bob’s laughter and remembers him well.


  4. Donna H. says:

    You are so right … the little things that were such a part of their daily lives, are usually the hardest to part with. My mother carried a Vera Bradley tote for her meds and I just cannot bring myself to get rid of IT even after three years this past November! So I get what you are feeling, my dear! I cherish the 2 Corinthians verse and must remind myself to be comforted by the words. Happy Birthday to you Bob! Your legacy lives on!! Until next time … Donna H.


    1. Angel says:

      Hey Donna, glad to see you’re still around reading my ramblings. Thanks for your faithfulness.


      1. Lakisha says:

        An answer from an expert! Thanks for cogtuibrtinn.


  5. Lenore Diane says:

    Angel, when I read the title, I thought it had to do with the new baby. While the gist of the post is a heartwarming tale of your father – the memento – the sense of loss – and his new found good health in heaven, I can’t help but equate the loss of his old body and the birth of your baby’s new body.

    This was beautiful.


    1. Angel says:

      Wow. That was deep. Thanks Lenore!!


  6. What a wonderful post! I know how it feels to throw away those things our parent kept for their survival. I often think of the new body my mom and dad have in Heaven… and it gives me sweet comfort.

    By the way, I nominated you for the Versatile Blogger Award!!! Go check it out on my wedsite. I tried to paste the logo here, but couldn’t


  7. Lenore Diane says:

    Did you have your baby yet? Did you have your baby yet?! Hope Mommy, Daddy and Baby are doing well!


  8. Donna H. says:

    Well, it’s 2:30 in the morning here and I awoke thinking of Emma Kate! Been checking in each day hoping to hear of her safe arrival. Sorry for the anxious-ness ( is that a word?) I’m thinking she might be one of the most anticipated arrivals EVER! Please know that all of your “blog-family” is praying and loving you all. Guess I’ll go back to bed and dream some sweet dreams of little Miss Emma 🙂 Until next time … Donna H


  9. Donna H. says:

    Please, please… would someone let us hear something about Emma Kate’s arrival???? I don’t do facebook or any of the other “social” stuff, so my level of “concern” is escalating!!! and I am keeping all in my prayers. Thanks


    1. Angel says:

      Hi dear Donna, I’m sorry I haven’t updated lately. Our sweet little baby arrived Saturday, January 28. She weighed 7lbs 4oz, and was 41 weeks, but was quickly taken to the NICU due to breathing problems. Today is Wednesday however and she has improved wonderfully. I was discharged yesterday and hopefully she will be out Friday. I’m on my way to see her this morning and give her some breakfast. She is absolutely previous, the spitting image ocher daddy and is alert and wide eyed. Pictures to follow. Sorry I’ve left my dear readers hanging, it’s been s crazy few days. Much love,
      angel, J-dub & Emma Kate.


      1. Donna H. says:

        Oh my gosh, thank you, thank you, thank you Angel, for taking the time to respond!!! I’m sooo relieved to know that she is here and is doing well. We will be anxious to see photos when you find time 🙂 Congratulations to you all and my continued prayers for her well- being and arrival home where you can spoil her unbelieveably!! Until next time … Donna H.


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