Could NOT believe how long since I've updated. And how much has changed since that time. Perhaps the changes have provided me with some explanations as to the poor updating!
My wonderful mother-in-law, Janice Richardson, passed away in August. She had been diagnosed with Stage 4 melanoma about a year and a half earlier, in April of 2009. She fought hard to live so she could meet her newest grandchild, my niece Alexanda. She met her, she held her, she fell in love with her. The remainder of the summer was beyond rough. But through that tears, we got to say things we might never have said. That was good.
Then came fall. Fall was fun and busy and though our lives had changed, we kept on going, in "our new reality". That was a phrase that I started using to describe our family during the summer. I think I tried to put some normalcy into our world with that phrase.
I even wrote a note on my Facebook page at the end of 2010, detailing some of the changes, good and bad, exciting and scary.
Then came January 12th. Started out bad. Had a sick puppy. Doesn't sound like the end of the world to most, but considering we had lost our last puppy back in October, it struck fear in our hearts. I even posted some silly, tough sounding Facebook status that referred the fact that 2011 had better "back off" with the bad luck...I was going to have none of it.
Little did I know. That afternoon, I got a call from my mom. Daddy had died. Suddenly, unexpectedly, minutes after clocking out from his job because he felt sick. My daddy. My mom's "sweetheart" for nearly 50 years.
Naturally, the next few days, and now nearly 2 weeks, have been painful. On the one hand, he did not suffer. He didn't have to suffer so many things that he feared with his health. He was just gone. I have no doubt he is in Heaven. No doubt at all. On the other hand, there was no time for goodbyes. No holding his hand and assuring him I loved him, and thanking him for the life he has given me.
I've also been reminded of the importance of family....And I don't just mean the immediate family. The cousins, the aunts, uncles, 2nd cousins, 3rd cousins, the whole clan. The importance of lessons taught. The importance of so many things.
My brother says we will be forever changed but we will make it. How true. Forever changed, but also forever the same because we were raised on a solid foundation, thanks to Mom and Dad.
Hug your loved ones. Tell them you love them.