A Saturday to Remember


by John C. Westervelt


        In a recent Tidings, I shared from my archives:

Tuesday April 1, 1997

        When the three-year-olds began preschool in the fall, Megan would sometimes cry for her mother. Today this self-assured child arrives at school with a bounce in her step and a talking smile on her face.

        While helping at the play dough table today, I could see that Megan had the heart shaped cutter upside down. She was trying to cut with the blunt side rather than the sharp edge of the plastic pattern.

        I turned the cutter over and pressed it into the play dough for her. Unknown to me, Megan’s tiny finger was under the play dough below the cutter. By now so very mature, she didn’t cry, but I could see her looking up at me with a grimacing expression. I felt so terrible that she could see pain in my eyes. With eyes on eyes, she said, “That’s okay, Grandpa John.” A deep love for this child grew deeper.


        A few days after the Tidings was mailed, I received the following email:

Hello "Grandpa John"! We just received the latest "Tidings", and I read your wonderful article. I am Megan White's mom (the Megan you mentioned in one of your stories).  She often attends Asbury now with her boyfriend, and receives the publication.

Megan is currently a student at the University of Tulsa, and (if you'll please forgive this proud mother for saying so) has grown into a wonderful, godly young woman.

I sent her the article, and we started talking.  I know this is very short notice, but would you by chance have time for us to drop by to visit you for a few minutes tomorrow (Saturday, April 6) - late morning or early afternoon?  We would both love the opportunity to visit with you!  Kindest regards, Jamie White


        I invited Jamie and Megan to have lunch with me in the Crestwood dining room at Oklahoma Methodist Manor on Saturday. I learned that Megan, a Metro Christian graduate and a Merit Scholar, is a sophomore at Tulsa University on full scholarship studying to be a speech pathologist.

        Before departing after two hours of renewed closeness, Jamie asked to get pictures. We stood arm in arm in front of the Crestwood fireplace. The three-year-old I had loved was now a woman in her own right.

        Jamie and Megan brought me a hexagon shaped jar of strawberry spread. Jamie said as they prepared to leave, “Come go to the car with us. I want you to have some of my colored eggs.” These eggs from the Farmers’ Market on Cherry Street were colored, not by human hands, but by the chickens themselves. It was as if Jamie had a dozen colored jewels and she wanted me to have half of them.

        After eating supper and watching Lawrence Welk, I went out on my second story balcony. The shifting orange colors on the horizon soothed my soul. I took a deep breath and smelled and tasted the air. I was reminded of the air on the beach of Hawaii at sunset when I was there as a navy midshipman when I was Megan’s age. The reminiscing continued as I thought of a mother and daughter giving me two hours of their time on this Saturday.

        In the noontime conversation with Jamie and Megan, I talked about my life journey and about beginning the final leg with a move to a retirement home. As the sky darkened, I whispered to God, “I would not want to have missed this Saturday.”


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