Just a few weeks after country singer Joey Feek passed away from her long battle with cervical cancer, her husband Rory shared an emotional blog post that is nothing short of surgery for the soul.
He explained that Easter had always been Joey’s favorite holiday because it celebrates the day that her Savior rose from the dead and the “newness of life that Easter brought to the world”…so this year he couldn’t help but reflect on the wonderful Easters past that they shared and how different this one would’ve been with his bride by his side.
“What it would mean to her to share Easter this year with our two-year-old,” he wrote. “It would be so, so special.”
But instead of focusing on what they were lacking, Rory began to reflect on a particular Bible verse that has been on his mind lately: John 3:30. It reads, “He must become greater; I must become less.”
“I know that the context of the verse is John the baptist talking about Jesus’ ministry growing as his will become less,” wrote Rory. “But I think of that verse today because of Indiana. And because of Joey.”
Though the father-daughter duo has gone to visit Joey every day since she passed, Rory couldn’t help but note a sad yet remarkable occurrence.
“Indy has not asked for her mama. Not one single time since Joey’s been gone,” he shared. “It’s almost as if she hasn’t noticed that she’s not here. And that is so sad… and oh, so wonderful – all at the same time.”
When the family first arrived in Indiana for Joey’s hospice care, “Joey was Indy’s whole world” according to Rory, and “everyone else was… well, just everyone else.”
But as Rory details his dying bride’s selfless acts in her final months, it becomes ever so clear why Indy didn’t need to ask for her mama after she died. It’s packed so full of sacrificial, unconditional love, you simply can’t read these words about his wife without seeing straight into the heart of Jesus.
She loved her mama so much and all she wanted was to be with her, beside her or in-sight of her. But in early November, when Joey started to realize that there was a good chance that she might not beat her battle with cancer, she made a decision…”he must become greater and I must become less.”
And she started going against everything in her being that told her “time was short” so hold her baby even tighter… and longer… and more… and instead – she handed the baby to me, and sat alone in a bed and watched and listened as my relationship with Indy grew…and hers lessoned.
I still remember the day a few weeks later when I was sitting on the couch near Joey’s bed and Indy was playing on the floor at my feet and Joey looked over at me and said, “she needs you now…”. I looked at Joey and saw the look on her face and knew what she meant, and I wanted to cry. But she just smiled and said, “…it’s best this way honey”.
Who does that? Who has that kind of strength and character? Not me, that’s for sure. I would’ve taken the low, easy road… the one that served me more. I would’ve tried to make the ties with our baby stronger and her love for me deeper so that she wouldn’t forget me… and in the end, probably left our baby wrecked with grief over the loss of the one person she loved and needed most. But not Joey. She let Indy fall more in love with me…and less in love with her. She carried the pain on her own shoulders, to try to keep it off of mine. And even more so, off of Indy’s.
Don’t get me wrong, there were still lots of times in those last few months that I put Indy in her mama’s lap and they spent time together, loving and enjoying each other. But it was never the same. Indiana loved her mama… but she wanted me. She needed me.
Thank you Joey.