Saturday, June 10, 2017
Pat called me in the evening the day of Grandma Dixie's funeral. He told me how everything went and we both decided we should have moved heaven and earth for me and the kids to be there. Lesson learned a bit too late.
When we found out about her death, we were in Arizona returning home from a trip to California, so the thought of turning around and driving back again in just a couple days was awful. The thought of trying to find someone to feed our pets again for six days (the fastest we could possibly do the trip) was a awful. The thought of missing out on camps for two of my boys (and not being refunded the $200) was awful. Especially since Dallas was on staff so they'd be down a person. Plus I was teaching day camp all week and I know I would leave them in a real difficult situation trying to replace me last minute. Four full days of teaching. And I didn't teach simple stuff. We worked for days preparing the equipment needed and each night preparing for the next day. Then there's all the trek stuff that is about to kick off on Tuesday and I felt obligated to stay and help with the registration and last minute communications (that are happening right now). I'm a dependable person. If I say I'm going to do something, I do it!
But there are times when you need to put family first, even if it means disappointing others. God will make up the difference, and I should have remembered that and had faith. Pat's in Sacramento with hundreds of family members and wishing, as am I, that our kids could see what a wonderful family they belong to! They are at the perfect age for this to have made a real impact on them. I know that after my grandparents died, things just weren't the same. There wasn't the head of the family visibly there to tie us all together and make us come to family reunions and such. It's hard to describe. I'm hoping desperately that Pat will get recordings of everything, but it won't be quite the same. So I had a good long cry yesterday. All the stress I've been under with all these responsibilities, and feeling guilty for not being there, and having Pat gone, and worrying about Dallas who has been gone for eight days.... it was too much, and I have become very, very sick. Fever and a painful sore throat.
I watched Lark Rise to Candleford last night and it was the perfect episode to sum up my mood. One of my favorite episodes in season 3 (I think episode 4) where they bring in the harvest. What is leftover in the fields feeds their village for the winter so it must be collected. It is a great undertaking, requiring all the villagers, even mothers with small babes and little children to get the work done before the wheat is ruined. But suddenly in the midst of their work, a terrible illness breaks out; measles. And anyone who hasn't had it before, gets it, including all of their little children.
So they are faced with an impossible task. They must quit working to nurse the sick and dying; their own precious children! But they can't quit working or come winter they will starve! Mothers and fathers cry, "What am I going to do?" Because it is clearly impossible- There is a desperate need for them to be in two places at once!
I thought of how God saves us in moments like these, when there is no one to turn to and no possible way to accomplish the things asked of us, it is the perfect opportunity to rely on the Lord who is mighty to save. We say a powerful prayer and know that He will send a miracle or a least give us peace and strength in what we're called to endure and thus we know He has a reason that we should be going through it.
I know my plight isn't anything like theirs, but still I felt torn, needing to be in two places at once, and incredibly sick to top it all off so the episode seemed to fit my circumstances perfectly. I just cried and cried. I'm sure I wouldn't have gotten sick if I had gone to California. It is a stress illness, like I get when I'm stressed beyond what I can bear, my body shuts down. I already had too much, but to then have Pat gone too was very difficult.
But I'm glad that he was able to be there to speak and Dixie's funeral and to have this time with his family. The family is so big. Out of maybe around 60? grandchildren he was honored to be chosen to speak (though he was extremely nervous and would have happily let someone else do it). I prayed a lot for him to find the right words to say. Grandma Dixie lived a life patterned after Jesus Christ, so I knew she would want whatever would most help those who would hear it, more than to sing her praises. He and Dallas will both be home sometime today, which I am very much looking forward too. I think I'll stay home from church tomorrow and rest if I don't get better before then.
I forgot to mention that Grandma Dixie called to talk to Dallas about his Eagle project and was really interested in it. I think he even wrote her a letter about it at her request. And she called Pat to talk to him about his current calling and so he actually got to talk to her recently! She also sent him a gift- a wonderful movie called One Good Man. It is our life, watching that. It just felt like our life. Great movie for Sunday.