Certain Man and I are safely landed at Eldest Son’s house in Sugarcreek, Ohio. It has been a very busy, emotionally draining, but GLORIOUS five days since we received word of Mom Yutzy’s passing. It has been wondrous, indeed, to watch God’s gifts to us over the last week. There are things that are too incredible to be co-incidental.
First and foremost: We are without chickens. The one thing that was going to be a real problem was a formaldehyde treatment for our chicken houses that HAD to be done on Saturday or Monday. This was the primary reason we had decided not to go to Ohio this weekend to see Mom Yutzy. And when it seemed like she had rallied, and was expected to last a few more weeks, maybe MONTHS, we felt like it was God’s direct provision for us. Then, on Wednesday, our service man called and said that they had changed it to Thursday morning, first thing. So when the call came that Mom was gone, by the time we got ready to leave, the treatment was finished, and CM was able to do his part of turning off the gas, and making sure everything was in order. While we have been here in Ohio, we got word that our “chicks in” date has gotten moved back a day, making things so much easier for when we get home.
The 19 Grandchildren of Sue Yutzy
Back row: Raphael Yutzy and Lem Yutzy (Oldest and Youngest Sons of Daniel) Jay Yutzy (Oldest Son of Joseph) Aaron and Peter Zehr (Fourth and Fifth Sons of Rachel) David Zehr (Only Son of Ruth) Mark, Jeremy and Philip Zehr (Oldest Son, Third Son and Second Son of Rachel) Weston Yutzy (Youngest Son of Joseph).
Second row: Deborah and Rachel Yutzy and Christina Bontrager (Middle, Youngest and Oldest Daughters of Daniel) Anna Rose Zimmerman and Miriam Bergey (Oldest and Youngest Daughters of Rachel) Joy Cedarquist (Daughter of Joseph) Bethany Weaver, Katie Steria and Charity Zehr (Middle, Oldest and Youngest Daughters of Ruth).
There were additional gifts — things we couldn’t have orchestrated, like lodging arrangements, traveling mercies, all the grandchildren being able to be there, unbelievable provision for this “completely out of state” immediate family that included wonderful three meals, an after viewing snack that was more like a meal, warm and encouraging friends who shared hugs and prayers and kind words and sleeping/living spaces and positive memories of Mom that we would never have known. What wondrous LOVE is this?
And the weather! We woke to ice on Friday morning, and it was cold and unpredictable for the next two day. Monday morning, the day of the funeral, dawned sunny and clear. CM father’s funeral in November of 2010 was bitterly cold and windy, but this day was calm and bearable. The funeral went without a hitch, and the time around the grave was so meaningful.
One of the things that the Ohio family does is always cover the grave as part of the committal service. They see it as a final service, a labor of love to their beloved family member. Yesterday, there was even a small shovel provided for children, and it was special to see our Grandbaby, Charis, shovel a few shovels of dirt onto the grave of her great grandmother. It was precious, precious, as each of our children and our beloved son in law, Jesse, took their turns as well. I wish so much that it was something that would be done as a matter of course in Delaware. Years ago, when Daniel’s brother, Joseph, was killed in a truck accident and buried in the Greenwood cemetery, Certain Man, and his father were startled to discover that the grave was covered by strangers. They appealed and won the right to come back later with several of Joseph’s close friends to help cover the grave. Daniel’s father felt that to not be allowed to do this would be a grave injustice to the family. It has been done a few times in recent times. When my precious daddy died in 2005, I know it was a big leap for some of my siblings, but Daniel and I so much wanted to have the opportunity that the family agreed. Since then it has happened a few times, and it seems to be a most meaningful part of saying good-bye.
And then it was time to wrap us some things regarding paperwork, meet old friends and some family for supper, sort out some of the things from the funeral and to crash at Greg and Valarie’s house for one more night in that great bed. This morning we slept in, packed, ate a breakfast with Greg and Valerie, picked up Lena on the next street, dropped her off at the airport and got on our way to Holmes County.
And now we have this chance to spend some time with our three new grandbabies. And “babies” are what they really are! The three year old is two years and one week older than the youngest, one year and one day older than the middle one. And the middle one was born on my birthday! How cool is that? I think it’s beyond Cool!
Lord willing, we plan to be home sometime tomorrow. I’m anxious to be there, but I’m not exactly looking forward to the drive. We have a book to read: Not Bad for an Amish Boy, written by Eli Helmuth, a friend of both of us, with lots of familiar names and places in it. We started it today, and are enjoying it while the miles roll by. It is a cold and rainy day, and sharing the words of an interesting book in a warm car while the windshield wipers slap back and forth makes for cozy driving.
The boys are napping (that would be the three little ones, their daddy and grandpa as well!) and soon it will be supper time. Wherever you and those you love are tonight, may you be safe and warm and dry. And don’t forget to share with those who have less.
Thank God for the Hope of Heaven!