Tuesday, June 10, 2014

A loss on Earth but a way better ending

I have been mia for the last couple of months.  I have some major catching up to do about my adorable kids but today, I am going to share about my absence. 

The last 2 months (starting in april and may) all of my extra time and energy went into a 4 hour drive to spend last precious moments with my Grandma. 

She returned from a trip to Alaska to her home in Springfield in March and was sick (which was not uncommon for her return).  The sickness lingered so she was taken to urgent care where an x-ray showed a mass on her liver.  After several test and doctors' visits, the results were in.  My mom called me to tell me the news, I knew things were bad and was expecting something similar to my grandpa's diagnoses 7 years early, which he was given 6 months - 3 years; after a crack in her voice, I heard across the phone, "A few weeks."  Tears immediately started coming and I quickly got off the phone to collect myself only to be back in tears as I repeated the information to my husband and dad.  "A Few Weeks!!"  The doctor did not even give months but a few weeks, the rest of the day as I thought about it, I immediately went to tears.  I almost weekly wish my grandpa was here to share in my everyday moments and as I began to think about not having my grandma either brought a lot of sorrow. 

I had already committed to making the trip to Springfield every week before the diagnoses (round trip is 4 hours) but after I heard the news, it was almost impossible to go home at the end of the day.  Some days I would decide to stay the night, other times I would go twice in the week.  Toward the end I even went after my kids went to bed and came home in the morning.  I wanted to be there, I wanted to spend those last precious moments with her.  I wanted to see if she had any wisdom she needed me to share.  Over the 5 weeks after her diagnoses, I watched as her health deteriorated but not once did her faith.  She was very weak and had moments of horrendous pain and her first response was not medicine but to pray under her breath.  In between her moans from pain you could hear her praying, praying for God's comfort, praying for the pain to go away, praying for God's hand.  That was something every time I would think, God give me faith like hers that when I am dying, my first response is to turn to you.  Each day she grew weaker and was unable to do more and more things.  Each day was harder to watch her suffer.  I would daily pray God, "do not let her suffer anymore."  I feared every evening leaving it was my last time to see her and cried every time I saw her as she had became so weak.  Almost 5 weeks exactly from her diagnoses, I was headed to Springfield knowing it was almost the end, I was half way there when I got the call.  My heart was heavy, I so desperately wanted to be by her side, I wanted to hold her hand one last time.  I went switched back and forth from heavy sobbing  to praying the rest of the trip to Springfield.  As I got to Springfield, I was still extremely sad about the loss of this special person but I began to get a peace.  When I walked into her room and looked at her body it was as though God wrapped his arms around me and told me, "She suffers no more."

My Grandma watched us several days a week from the time we were born until we went to school and even then we still saw my grandparents weekly. She kept journals of her days for over 50 years and as I went back through some of her journals my heart was happy to see that everyday she wrote sweet notes and remarks about me and my sister.  Not just a few days but for years we made the journal weekly and a lot of times daily.  We shared precious moments with her and she poured into our lives.  She continue to pour into our lives until her last days as I watched as she prayed God have I done everything you have wanted on this earth, I don't want to go until I have.  This resonated in my heart what a strong prayer and one that I have started daily, God  I want to do everything you want me to do today!

My prayer while she was sick is that Niah would have such an understanding of what was happening to Grandma Nancy.  From the very beginning I began to tell her Gma Nancy is very sick but one day she is going to heaven and will no longer be sick.  Niah would talk about Gma Nancy going to heaven and we would talk about what heaven is and how you get there.  In her last day Niah sat on the bed as my grandma slept rubbed her back and prayed, "Jesus take Grandma Nancy to heaven so she is not sick."  This was a non prompted prayer that gave my heart such a peace that she did understand.  When she died and I told her, "Grandma Nancy went to heaven." Her reply was, "mommy I know you miss her but she is not sick anymore, right."  When we were at the funeral, she said, "what is that up there in that box."  I took her up there and told her, "It was a statue of Grandma Nancy."  Her reply, "Cause she is in Heaven."  Not only did she "get it" but she reminded me Grandma Nancy is in a better place.  She will always be missed but she has a way better ending.

Camp has started so hopefully I will be a better blogger but I am not making any promises.