Friday, December 23, 2011

Can It Really Be A New Story?

What a day. It just flew by. I am so tired but it is so wonderful to have family here. We were woken up around 1:50 a.m. this morning with the very sad news that a dear man in our ward had passed away. This is a man I have loved dearly. He was diagnosed with liver failure two years ago and was told he had six months to live. He lived two years. He and his wife have been wonderful, dear people. I have been working with both of them for a long time now doing the best I could to help prepare them for the inevitability of death. Being a former hospice nurse, I am always pleased if people allow me to help them. We visited these good people two nights ago when it seemed clear that we were nearing the end. Last night we visited again. It was evident that this friend of ours would not make it to the morning. Our goodbyes were tender. He was fortunate to have all his family with him when he passed on. Jim and I had a hard time getting back to sleep after the phone call. Tears came freely. His passing is tender. I will miss him.

I finally did get back to sleep after a few hours and then the phone rang again at 7:00 a.m. I didn't answer the phone but it woke me up and I have been going ever since.
I taught Sarah how to make the lasagna filling for tomorrow's dinner. I made a fabulous pot of sauce and meatballs. I also made some quick breads to bring to some neighbors. It seemed I spent a lot of time in the kitchen today. I did manage to get in a good walk though in the bright sunshine and clean, fresh air.
Nathan was everywhere today and into everything
but he is most delightful.
Chris came tonight to join us for our annual fireplace party.
Of course, he and Seth wanted to a play a video game.
Gregory has been working on preparing a brief for law school.
Nevertheless, even without Emma and Ian....
it's time for the fireplace party.
Chris and Seth moved the furniture 
and brought down mattresses.
The food is set out and believe it or not, 
even though I thought it never would be, 
all is ready.
Emma always reads "The Best Christmas Pageant Ever."
She's not here this year and we decided to break tradition
of all things and read a different story.
Tonight we are reading "The Mansion" by Henry VanDyke.
Jim is reading...from the Nook of all things!
My how times have changed. :)
It's a good story.
With a good message.
Nathan is asleep but his parents are not.
Jim is still reading. As I sit here listening, I'm writing this blog post. I can't help but think of all the years that have passed. My small children all grew up. I'm a grandmother now. I don't know how many more years we will continue to have fireplace parties. Next year everyone will be home including Ian but the year after that, I assume Sarah and Gregory will visit Canada, Ian might be gone and married, and Seth will be on his mission. Time will pass and maybe one year, it will be just Jim and me and a fire.

But for now...
I am surrounded by those who bring me 
the greatest joy 
even as I miss those who are not with us...

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