A Selfish Prayer Leads to A Bittersweet Goodbye

The end of January always makes me an emotional wreck.  I can be at home watching a Kevin Hart stand-up special on Netflix and burst into an overflow of tears.  You would think that I was 8-month hormonal pregnant lady.  And if you ask anyone who knows me, they will tell you that sadness is not a part of my emotional pallet.  So for me to act in this type of matter is WAY out of the ordinary for me.  But once I start to notice the feeling, I can tell you that the time is near. 

12 years ago, on January 23 my grandmother passed.

That week has been engraved into my memory.  I was in 10th grade and my mother picked me up from basketball practice, she mentioned that we weren’t going home but to the hospital.  By the sound of her voice, I knew that this wasn’t a typical trip like the ones my grandmother had before.  Then my ma began to talk about how my grandfather told her to take care of her before he passed, and that is what she did.  I could hear the pain in my ma’s voice; I had a gut feeling that things weren’t going well. 

All of my fears were confirmed when I walked into the hospital waiting room and saw my family looking very somber.  A usually lively group looked as though the breath had been sucked out of them.  My brothers greeted me with a hug (which was already weird because we are not the touchy siblings) and we all cried as we embraced each other.

I’ve been in church my entire life and I would always hear testimonies of how prayer changed things.  I don’t think I ever prayed as hard as I did during that week that God would heal my grandmother and allow her to live and stay around just a little bit longer.  So she could settle the argument that I was her favorite granddaughter, to threaten and knock me upside the head if I turned from her Soaps one more time, and tell me that when we lost a basketball game that we would get them next time.

But a couple days later, she left us.

Years later I was sitting in Bible Study and the teacher talked about a similar prayer that he prayed for his father.  And as we would discuss, he opened to how selfish his prayers were.  That it was what he wanted and not necessary their wish or what God’s will was for their life.  I then realized how stuck on myself I was with my grandma, she did the job that she was meant to do and it was her time to turn up in heaven. 

Though it is nearing the end of January, I began to experience the same feeling, but this time for a different reason.  I was watching the Oprah and First Lady Michelle Obama interview and I began to BALL.  I cried for the majority of the interview.   

And don’t even get me started on President Barack Obama’s farewell speech; you would’ve thought that somebody stole my Good Times DVD collection (….stop judging).  

And I began to pray to find any way to allow Obama to serve in office for FOUR more years! And by America’s response, I wasn’t the only one.

But I found myself having selfish prayers again.  Obama did his part and now it was time for him to move on (unfortunately).  He taught America a lot and gave us a major dose of hope in the meantime.  He was proof to never stop dreaming your biggest dream.  Who would’ve thought that a country that was built by slaves would later elect an African-American President?  I was able to witness history and give me the push that all things are possible; no matter how many people are against it! President Obama showed us how to move with dignity and grace no matter who and what attempt to bring you down.  And when you face hate, always show it love and you will ALWAYS come out on top!

I don’t know what the future holds.  But that is not up for me to decide.  Instead, I’ll be in a state of gratitude for the present and embrace this last moment.  Thanks to the First Family for allowing America to believe again (now go and turn up!).