An old man suddenly loses his wife and he is devastated. Days later, his stepdaughter throws him out of their house and he spends days and nights at his wife’s grave. Luckily, unexpected help comes his way after he hears a voice.
Jerry was 78 when his wife passed away, leaving him devastated and heartbroken. To add salt to injury, he also had Alzheimer’s, having developed the condition shortly before his wife’s demise. Things looked ugly.
Jerry and Susan had been married for over two decades, and he did not know how to face life without her. She had been his rock, and he felt lost without her.
When Jerry and Susan got married, Susan had been freshly divorced with a two-year-old daughter, Eva. Jerry had never been married before, and gaining a family of his own was more than he had prayed for. He treated Eva like he would his own daughter, and life had been good.
However, things took a nasty turn when his wife died suddenly from a heart attack. Jerry went to work in his garage one morning, like was the norm, but when he returned to the house to grab lunch, he found his poor wife sprawled on the floor, clutching desperately at her chest.
“Jesus Christ! Susan, my love! Don’t do this to me! Wake up! Wake up!” he had called out, shaking his wife vigorously.
The doctors had tried as much as possible, but it was too late.
They buried her at the city cemetery a few days later, and since then, things never returned to the way they were before.
A few days after laying his wife to rest, Jerry came home to find his suitcases and bags strewn on the front porch.
“Eva! Eva! Open up! What’s going on?” he demanded, almost knocking the front door off its hinges.
“This is my mother’s house, and you’re no longer welcome here!” Eva screamed as she threw more stuff out.
[Jerry] continued to visit his wife’s grave, not to mourn but to thank her for sending him a family in his old age.
Jerry could not believe it and pleaded with her to open up, but Eva was having none of it. “Damn it, Eva! This is as much my house as it was Susan’s!” he screamed.
When his attempts at getting her to open up became futile, Jerry slowly carried his luggage to his truck and drove to the cemetery. He knelt beside his wife’s fresh grave and cried his heart out.
“My love, you’ve been gone only a few days, and my life is already falling apart!” he desperately cried. “Why did you have to leave me, my love?” He missed her so much it hurt.
“God, end my life too so I can be with my wife,” he pleaded, raising his eyes to the skies.
“I can’t live like this anymore; just take me, Lord!” he cried desperately.
Jerry spent all his time crying at his wife’s grave, as he did many more days and nights after that.
One day, as he lay feeble at the foot of his wife’s grave, he heard a voice calling.
“Hey, old man, come with me!” He was startled and looked up, desperately hoping that God had finally decided to take him.
But then, he heard, “I’m behind you.”
He turned quickly and saw a young man standing a few yards behind him. “I’ve seen many people mourn their loved ones, but never so intensely. Was she your wife?” wondered Jason, who worked at the cemetery as its caretaker.
“She is! She is t he love of my life, and we were married for years,” Jerry answered as he rose from the ground.
“Come with me!” Jason said, helping Jerry up. He led him to the caretaker’s office near the cemetery gates and offered him tea and a sandwich before asking him to narrate his story.
Jerry gladly gobbled up the sandwich. He had not eaten in days and was starving.
After learning that Jerry’s stepdaughter had thrown him out, Jason knew he could help.
“My wife’s a lawyer; I’m sure she can look into your case and find a way to help you. Come home with me tonight,” Jason offered, which was music to Jerry’s ears.
That evening, Jason arrived home with Jerry, and through the night, Jerry narrated his sad story to Jason and his wife, Kayla, and she offered to help him.
It turns out that Jason was a father of four, and his kids bonded exceptionally well with Jerry. They started calling him grandpa and helped him, even if, for a moment, to forget all his sadness. For the first time since his wife’s death, Jerry smiled again.
He spent a few days at Jason’s house, and on Kayla’s next off day, she and her husband accompanied Jerry to his old house. They found Eva, and Kayla sat her down.
“I’m Kayla, a friend of your father’s, and I’ve come to help him claim what is rightfully his.”
“But the house is my mother’s as well!” Eva replied, obviously more aware that things could soon change for her.
“That much is true, but it also belonged to your father. He gets to choose whether to house you here or kick you out, not the other way around,” Kayla reiterated.
“I wouldn’t want to kick you out, but since we cannot cohabit, all I ask for is a little money to help me get a smaller place for myself,” Jerry interjected.
It seemed like a small enough sacrifice for her freedom, and Eva quickly agreed to the terms. Jerry soon bought a small house, and with the help of Jason and his family, furnished it and moved all his stuff there.
They became his new family and visited him often, making his last days brighter and more bearable. He lived a fulfilled life with his new family and continued to visit his wife’s grave, not to mourn but to thank her for sending him a family in his old age.
What can we learn from this story?
Sometimes help comes from the most unexpected places. When Jerry was desperate for a family and a place to stay, it was a stranger that came to his rescue.
Family is not about those that one is closely related to. Jerry found a more loving family with strangers than he did with his daughter. Jason’s children loved and respected him more than Eva did.
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This piece is inspired by stories from the everyday lives of our readers and written by a professional writer. Any resemblance to actual names or locations is purely coincidental. All images are for illustration purposes only.