I have wondered occasionally what you must have thought when you first saw two little bodies squirming around in their cribs, squawking and demanding so much attention from others. Joseph, you were certainly old enough to understand who these two little runts were and why they required so much attention. But John, you were still in diapers and barely able to walk. You must have had some difficulty sizing up your new brother and sister and accepting your sudden relegation from king of the roost to third in line.
Jane and I certainly had no idea who you were or what kind of future we would all have together. I am sure my primary and sole focus at the time was to get fed and to be the center of attention. From family stories that I have heard, Jane had the same idea and the upper hand.
Knowing Mom and Dad, I doubt you guys ever felt neglected after our arrival. I suspect you both knew we were just two more creatures God sent for everyone to love. Thank God our parents were open to new life! You were probably just as eager as everyone else that we grow up and be able to do fun things together. Our little sister Pat had more than enough love to “mother” us all. No doubt our brother Pete was prepared to lend a helping hand.
As one day rapidly turned into another, I am certain that Jane and I never tired of looking at you guys while we tried to figure out why you were on the other side of the crib and we were confined. On those occasions when we were momentarily set free, what havoc we probably wrought to your toys and special things. I am sure you couldn’t wait until we were old enough where you could retaliate. I suspect John didn’t wait.
But just as suddenly as we appeared in your lives, you disappeared from ours. Neither Jane nor I had any idea where you guys had gone or why joyful eyes were suddenly so red, swollen and sad. How quickly all our lives were changed. You never got to meet your little sister Flo.
God wanted the both of you with Him! Things like that happened back then before the arrival of penicillin or the polio vaccine. How quickly pneumonia snatched the life out of John and polio briefly imprisoned Joseph in an iron lung before he joined his brother and their heavenly Creator. Every now and then I think of you guys and wonder what might have been. I need to do that more often. Thanks for letting us into your brief lives and for looking down all these years from above.
Without presuming upon God’s mercy, I pray that one day our entire family will be united eternally in His Presence. Would you put a good word in for us? Give Mom and Dad our love.
In the meanwhile, let’s keep in touch.