Thursday, July 1, 2010

My Heart Just Hurts

The past 2 months have been emotionally taxing in ways I couldn't have ever foreseen. Of course I've blogged my complaints about finances and medical stresses, and then came the deterioration of my 96 year old grandma's mortal body and her successant death. I can't believe how much I've missed her. I reflect on lessons I've learned from her probably daily. Then came Mitch's graduation--wonderful, but emotional, too. There have been so many changes. We've had marital conflict & growth, family conflict & growth, and individual conflict & growth. There was a visit from Kit & Felicia, and a Borden family reunion, and then my friend and adopted grandfather, Andrew Ferrante, passed on. I was lucky enough to get to make him Eggplant Parmeseana one last time. He's been gone 3 weeks now, and I feel a terrible emptiness. We had his funeral yesterday, which helps, but Andrew has left a serious hole in my heart that can't be filled. I loved him like my own grandfather (some pics are mixed in of him below). There was no one else like him. And to top it all off...come Monday....
Mike and Erin are moving to Washington D.C.. I hate that they're leaving. I've had so many close friends move away, which is hard enough in itself to say good-bye to them, but saying good-bye to a sister is so much worse, and difficult in a much different way. It's such a fantastic thing for them, and it's a promissing career opportunity (which is great for their future family), but I can't stand how extremely far it is. I miss living behind her on the ASU East Campus. I miss having Sunday dinners with her at Mom & Dad's, I miss spontaneous visits. I miss the way she tries to boss me around & how she tells me everything I should do to raise my kids--believe it or not, I really do regret not listening sooner to the thumb thing. Haha!
Erin if you're reading this, this next part is a good part about you, even if I don't express it right: The thing about Erin is that she has extremes in her personality, and she ALWAYS gets flack for it (don't worry, she knows how to dish the flack right back : ). Either she's all for something, or she's all against it, and one part of her that I'm going to miss is the variety of everything she is and even everything she isn't--she certainly has put up with me and everything I am, and am not. It adds color to all of our emotions, and spices up our family in ways that no one else can.

Erin has always been a great sister and friend to me and Jodi.

When I think of the bond of sisterhood that unites the characters in Little Women, I always cry because I feel like me and my sisters have that kind of a bond. Having a sister is a relationship unlike any other kind of relationship in this world. I'm so lucky to have 2 of them!

She taught Taylor everything he knows. Haha!

Here's a picture with Andrew when he and Diana took me & Mitch to the Atlantic Ocean at Pt. Pleasant Beach in New Jersey.

One of many times Andrew & Diana came to support us at the Easter Pageant. This was when we played Adam & Eve, and was the year Nicole was living with them.

Erin carrying the weight of the world on her shoulders--nothing's changed. : )

We had some of the best Halloween's. : )

As I look at this picture with my family, and the actor that played the Savior, I think about how the Lord's sacrifice makes it possible for us to all live together again. Erin might be parted with us by distance for a vast amount of time in this mortal life, but SOMEDAY, if we live worthily to make it to the Celestial kingdom of Heaven, we can be sealed forever with our families, I believe that in some sort of heavenly type of transportation that's fast, maybe I will be able to "think" my way over to Erin, and I won't have to save and save and save money to fly to her with a plane ticket, or travel 3 days by car just to visit in person. Oh, how I already long for that day.

Andrew looks great! I miss him!

This was right before the Pioneer Trek our Stake put on in 2004--Grandma Parham helped make our dresses.

This was taken on a Primary Activity Day about pioneers back in the day. : )

A relatively recent Halloween compared to the shot posted earlier.

I love this one! The family that makes silly faces together, stays together!

Mitch, D-Jo, Mike, Erin--this was taken before Mike's mission! Who would have known we'd end up as in-laws? I'm so glad he joined our family--he's so patient, kind, intelligent, friendly, genuine, and he loves Erin for who she really is. We'll miss you, Mike. You fit in effortlessly with our family. You're a great brother and friend to Mitch, Taylor, and Heber. After all of your adventures with Erin, don't forget to return home and retire near us, because I want to be able to hang out on a whim at your house again with you and Erin someday.

Erin, your "cup-cake" dress is symbolic of your personality--full of color and beauty, fun, energetic. Don't forget who you are, and don't forget us or where you came from. I hope you'll always be an Arizona girl at heart as you think about where home is. Enjoy yourself as you go share your light with the world! I love you!