“I’ll be waiting on the far side banks of Jordan”

Tuesday of this week – Dec. 11, 2012 – marked the eighth anniversary of the sudden, accidental death of my dad, The Rev. Wendell Sedgwick, whose ministerial career was the reason I grew up in, and grew to love, and eventually (many years later; you can, if you choose, read many of my past posts in this blog for details) returned to Queensborough, Ont. I hesitated to mention the event, here and elsewhere; and as it turned out, others hesitated to mention it to me. My husband, Raymond, for instance, knew perfectly well what that day was, but since I didn’t mention it myself, he thought it best not to say anything about it to me. I called my mum that evening, as I do most nights, and we chatted about the events of both our days, and we did not mention it. Perhaps afraid. It is a hard, hard memory. 

Time heals all, they say. Well, it doesn’t necessarily heal all, but it brings some healing balm. You learn that life goes on, and that is a very important lesson. One that Dad – or whoever your departed loved one is – would want you to know. Life does go on, because it has to. I like to think that Dad would be (and is) amused and amazed and ultimately pleased at the return to Queensborough of his eldest child and her husband – and so pleased at the kind and wonderful welcome they have received from the people – mostly new friends, some old – they have met there.

Life goes on, but we all pass away. Which is why I think a video of two of my heroes, Johnny Cash and June Carter Cash, is kind of nice to illustrate this post. Johnny and June were both near the end of their lives when this was filmed. Their commitment to each other, in this life and the next, is so obvious. I have this song on a record too (okay, a CD), and whenever I hear “And when I see you coming I will rise up with a shout/and coming running through the shallow water reaching for your hand” I think of all the couples I know who were together for so many years, and then were separated by death. And who wait for that joyful reunion – on the far side banks of Jordan. Or wherever it may be.

8 thoughts on ““I’ll be waiting on the far side banks of Jordan”

  1. I know that your dad must be so proud that you have the manse and have grown to be a loving Queensborough neighbour, just like he was. I talked to Sheila Barcier in Madoc yesterday and she mentioned knowing you as a neighbour many years ago. She also said what a great neighbour your dad was…GnG

    • Thanks for your kind words, Gayle and Grant. I was interested to learn that Mrs. Barcier is in Madoc – for some reason I thought the family had moved away. I remember them well as our Queensborough neighbours, and the Barcier kids and the Sedgwick kids spent a lot of time hanging about together. Nice memories!

  2. On this day of many tragic losses, I thank you for your inspirational post Katherine, and send you an understanding hug, while I too think of dear ones gone beyond.

    • Thank you so much, Lindi. The sadness of what happened today in Connecticut is just unspeakable. Many people in our newsroom are parents of young children, and of course all the TVs were tuned to the terrible news. It was a very emotional day. Let us hope and pray that some good, in the form of controls on who can have access to deadly weapons, comes of this.

  3. Me, too, Katherine…what Lindi said. Love you and will have a prayer for your Dad at the annivrsary Mass for Mom/Dad/Lorraine this Sunday at St. Mary Magdalen Parish in Tyngsborough. Hugs to you.

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