Out of the blue one of my girls asked me the other day if I went to my prom.
“Yes, I did,” I replied.
“Who did you go with? Did you go with your boyfriend?” she asked.
“Well, my junior prom I went to with a boy named Brian. He wasn’t my boyfriend then, but I wanted him to be. Senior prom I went to with a boy named Ryan. He was my friend.”
“Did you ever get that boy to be your boyfriend?” she asked.
“Yes, I did. He broke my heart, though, in the end,” I replied, perhaps a bit wistfully.
“Oh,” she said. “That’s sad.”
I was quick with my response, because I meant it with all of my heart…
“It isn’t sad, actually. Not one bit.”
“Nope. If he hadn’t broken my heart, I never would have married Daddy, and you, my dear, would not even exist!”
“Whoa,” she said. Mind clearly blown.
I said, “That’s the amazing thing about life. Sometimes you think what is happening to you is the worst possible thing, but good things often follow. There usually is a reason something didn’t go the way you wanted it to go. You just can’t see the whole picture until later.”
She thought for a minute and said, “Kind of like Papa dying?”
I felt a lump catch in my throat.
“Well, sometimes it’s harder to understand a reason why someone has to die,” I said.
“I think I know,” she said.
“Really? Tell me,” I said, more than a little curious.
She sighed and said, “When someone really important like Papa dies, it makes everyone around him appreciate everyone else who is still here a lot more. Before, I loved the people I loved…but now, I really, really love them so much more.”