Goodbyes are hard... even if they are "see ya laters"
Death is a hard thing to understand, really. No matter the faith, it is hard to wrap your mind around. One minute a person is there and the very next second they are not. One minute you have the chance to say, "I love you", "I'm sorry", "I forgive you", "thank you" and the next minute you only wish you would have said those words. I know that it happens all too often that people we love pass on and we wish we could have said so many things. It is when death comes that we can be reminded to make sure that we are filling each minute here on earth telling people the things that matter most. It has made me sad watching my own dad grieve the loss of his mother, and makes me even sadder to think about when I have to walk down that road. The idea of losing a parent brings tears to my eyes and chills up my spine. They are your forever backbone, how are they there one minute and gone the next? Makes you not want to take that time for granted.
I was able to see my grandfather, who is missing his wife so much. They were married for over 60 years. They did everything together. I remember how my grandpa cut out wooden pieces, and build small furnishings for my grandma to paint. They were both very creative. No wonder my dad can do pretty much anything he puts his mind to. In fact, all of the boys (my uncles & dad) can do pretty much anything. Very handy. Many of you have had my peanut butter/chocolate cookies that I give out around Christmas time. My grandma taught me out to make those when I was younger. I have made them pretty much every year since! She also taught me how to make Jam! I can't say that I have made jam since, but if I ever get the desire I know she will be the first person I think of. My grandma took me to the precious moments chapel/museum, a trip I won't ever forget. Did you even know they had such a thing? Well they do and it is amazing. I also smile when I think about my visits to arkansas, I remember that when visiting and going for a ride, grandma would be sure to put a pillow in the back seat, because she knew that I would quickly be asleep.
Although I can't say that my grandma and I were as close as some grandmother/granddaughter relationships are. I can say that she was a very special lady. She worked hard and she loved her family. She loved her family so much, that before she passed away she left a note for us all to know that she loved us and was proud of all of our accomplishments. I am also thankful that she met my grandpa, and that they decided to have some kids. She carried, birthed, and raised my dad, and he is a really good man.
It was bittersweet to go to California to bury my grandmother. I am thankful for the chance to not only participate in her services, see family that I hadn't seen in years and also see family and friends one last time before I head out on this adventure.