An older woman decided to visit her recently deceased husband's grave, only to find two little children standing there, waiting for her. She had no idea who they were, but that encounter would change her life forever.
Barbara Lytrell was in her early 60s when her husband Jonath died. She ended up very lonely, as she was so used to having her husband by her side through the years.
Barbara and Jonath never had any children because her husband was against it. She accepted this fact and instead found comfort in tending to her garden, where she grew crops, herbs, and flowers.
After Jonath died, Barbara continued with her daily routine, except this time, she didn't have her husband to share conversations and meals with. She missed him dearly, so she would visit his grave every afternoon to spend time with him.
Barbara found a young girl and boy near her husband's grave. | Source: Shutterstock
One day, she was surprised to see two children playing in front of her husband's grave. It was a young boy and girl, whom Barbara assumed were brother and sister, based on their resemblance.
"Hello, darlings. Are you lost?" she asked them after noticing that there weren't any adults around.
The boy shook his head. "Is this the grave of Jonath Lytrell?" he asked back.
Barbara paused for a while, taken aback that the young boy knew her husband's name. "Why, yes, it is," she replied.
The children smiled at Barbara and started jumping. "We're waiting for Mrs. Barbara Lytrell," the girl suddenly squealed. "She's our grandmother!"
Barbara visited her husband's grave, only to see two children playing nearby. | Source: Pexels
Barbara's heart began to pound out of her chest. Grandmother? she thought to herself. How could I have grandchildren if we never had any kids?
Her mind suddenly started playing different scenarios in her head. Did Jonath have an affair? she thought. Although it was painful, it was the only plausible explanation she could think of.
"What are your names, kids? And where are your parents?" Barbara asked the two children.
"I'm Steve, I'm 10, and this is my sister Linda, she's 6. We don't have any parents," the boy quietly replied. "We've been living with our aunt Anne, a friend of our mom. She is in the hotel just two streets away," he added.
Barbara checked her bag to get the blanket she always carried to the cemetery. She placed it on the floor and asked the two children to sit with her. She pulled out the sandwich she had saved for herself and handed it to them.
The two children were happy to see Barbara. | Source: Pexels
"I'm Barbara Lytrell," she told them as soon as they were settled. "But I never had any children... I wonder why you think I'm your grandmother," Barbara admitted.
The kids looked at each other, confused. "Well, you see, Mrs. Lytrell, our mother got sick and said she needed to fly back home to heaven. She assured us that we wouldn't be alone because we had a grandmother named Barbara Lytrell. That's you! We wanted to find you, so we asked our aunt to help us," Steve said.
"After weeks of trying to find you, our aunt found out that you lived here in Georgia. There was an online posting about Jonath Lytrell's death, so we visited this cemetery. The keeper said we'd find you here because you come here every day," Steve revealed.
"I see," Barbara replied, still confused about why the children's mother named her their grandmother. "What was your mother's name?" she decided to ask.
"Amanda Brooks," Linda answered.
Barbara knew Amanda as the child she wanted to adopt at the orphanage years ago. | Source: Pexels
Barbara gasped. "This can't be true!" She recognized that name very well and couldn't believe it. "Do you still live in the next town? Do you memorize your address?" she asked, curiously wanting to get a glimpse of Amanda's life.
The boy nodded. Barbara explained that she used to live in the same town when she was younger and she was familiar with the place.
Before taking the kids back to their aunt at the hotel, she decided to ask one more thing. "How did your mom introduce me as your grandmother?"
"Before flying to heaven, mom said she never found you again after you married Mr. Lytrell. She knew that you would love us, so she asked our aunt to help us find you," Steve explained.
"[Steve and Linda] left all of their things in Amanda's house because Anne didn't plan to keep them for long. She will put them in an orphanage once she relocates to another state," their neighbor revealed.
Amanda fell ill and asked her friend to help her children find Barbara. | Source: Pexels
Barbara couldn't help but cry. She indeed knew Amanda Brooks very well. Years ago, Barbara worked at an orphanage as a nurse. There, she met a little girl who completely stole her heart — Amanda.
She would give her gifts she'd enjoy like teddy bears and a Wizard of Oz book. They had a strong connection, and they would spend every afternoon playing and talking.
Barbara decided she wanted to adopt the young girl, but her then-boyfriend, Jonath, was against it. He didn't want to be a dad, and Barbara respected that. They moved to a different city and she never heard from Amanda again.
Barbara loved Jonath dearly and respected his wishes not to have children. | Source: Pexels
When Barbara got to Amanda's house, it was locked. She wasn't surprised, as she had already found out through the kids that their mom had died. This thought saddened her and brought her to tears.
She decided to knock on a neighbor's door, where she explained who she was. "I met Steve and Linda earlier today, and they gave me their address. Do they not live there at all?" Barbara asked.
The neighbor shook her head. "Steve and Linda have been living with Amanda's friend, Anne. They left all of their things in Amanda's house because Anne didn't plan to keep them for long. She will put them in an orphanage once she relocates to another state," she revealed.
Barbara placed a hand on her mouth, surprised at this revelation. "Oh dear, I wouldn't want those poor children to end up in an orphanage. Their mother suffered the same fate years ago," she said, tears filling her eyes again.
Barbara didn't want Steve and Linda to suffer the same fate as Amanda. | Source: Pexels
The neighbor realized Barbara was being genuine towards the children. She offered to open the house up for her to see what was inside. "I have the spare key to Amanda's house in case her children ever decided to get anything inside. She left it with me before she died," the neighbor told Barbara.
While she was there, she found the teddy bears she had given Amanda and the Wizard of Oz book as well. Right in front of the bears, she found a sealed envelope. She immediately took it, deciding to read it once she got home.
That night, Barbara decided to read the letter before heading back to the hotel to meet Steve, Linda, and their aunt Anne. It read:
How are you? I miss you dearly. Although you didn't adopt me all those years ago, I still consider you my real mother – the only mother figure in my life. I didn't have enough resources to find you, but I really wanted to introduce my children to you while I had the chance. I don't know how much time I have left, but I really hope Steve and Linda get to meet you even when I'm gone. Lots of love, Amanda."
Barbara sobbed, clutching the letter close to her chest. While she loved her husband dearly, she questioned why he never wanted to have children, even though he knew Barbara wanted to be a mom so badly.
Amanda had a handwritten letter prepared for Barbara. | Source: Pexels
Without hesitation, she decided to do what she couldn't when she was younger. She met with Anne, Steve, and Linda, and she revealed her intentions to adopt the kids.
"Anne, I found out from one of Amanda's old neighbors that you plan to put the kids in an orphanage soon. Is that true?" she asked.
The woman looked at Barbara shyly, nodding. "I'm sorry, Barbara. I can't take responsibility for two children on my own. Amanda didn't leave any money, and I just can't. I'm moving to another state to work, and I just won't be able to take it," she explained.
"Don't worry. I didn't mean to judge your decision," Barbara said. "I just wanted to clarify because I'm hoping to adopt Linda and Steve. I'd be happy to take care of them," she revealed.
Linda and Steve gasped, squealing in their seats. "Mom was right! Grandma Barbara would take care of us and love us!" Linda said.
Barbara followed the lengthy process of adopting the children. At 62, she found a great reason to stay fit and healthy and live a long life. Barbara now had two kids to love and treasure and could finally live the life she's always dreamed of.
What can we learn from this story?
Share this story with your loved ones. It might inspire them and make their day.
If you liked this story, you might like this one about an old man who sees a homeless girl at his wife's grave and inherits all of his assets.
This account is inspired by our reader's story and written by a professional writer. Any resemblance to actual names or locations is purely coincidental. All images are for illustration purposes only. Share your story with us; maybe it will change someone's life. If you would like to share your story, please send it to email@example.com.