Sunday, August 22, 2010


As I was looking out of the airplane window yesterday while making the decent into LAX it felt so familiar. I remembered countless times coming home from BYU and then later Seattle looking out the window just like that. The anticipation was so familiar and I still love coming home. For a moment the only difference seemed to be a gap of years.

But then I started thinking about how much I have changed in those years. I have matured and become a wife, a mother, hopefully a better daughter, and most of all an adult. I made the transition from an egocentric life to one based on the care of others. I smiled as I thought about how I had thought of what the traffic would be like for my parents while I was making my reservations. Seems like such a small and insignificant thing but I would have never done that in college, I would have only thought about my convenience.

I thought I would revel at the freedom of traveling by myself but instead found myself suffocating at the silence of 13 people in a shuttle van from St George to Vegas for 2 hours without 13 words being spoken. I choked up in the bathroom when I passed the Koala Care changing station and kept wanting to point out the planes taking off and landing to Caleb and Davis. They would have loved to go on an airplane! I wanted to sigh as I had to get up *again* to go chase Beckham after just bringing him back. He would be laughing so hard looking over his shoulder that he would not be able to run straight. I wanted to tease John, hold his hand, and make innuendos to him when no one was watching. The freedom of being unencumbered that I had anticipated was actually really uncomfortable.

Then I got home. Home to my familiar house and to my very familiar parents. Home to my old room and the familiar patterns, routines, and smells. It has been so good for me to be here. My Mom and I wept while clinging to each other. Weeping for the dreams that we probably wont be able to fulfill together, for the fear of what the future and this disease hold, and mostly we wept out of love. Love and gratitude we feel for each other. It was cleansing for me.

She is so full of faith and she is not afraid. She is sad at the things she might miss out on but she is brave enough to face this head on. I feel at peace today. This is definitely not what I wanted. In fact it sucks. Really sucks! But in spite of that I know that everything will be okay.

I read Tuesdays with Morrie twice on the way down. In it he described something that I have felt but not understood in the last few weeks. He said when you fully accept death you really learn to live. In the perspective change that was forced upon me by this new reality I see everything around me so differently. I see people differently. I have more compassion, more gratitude, and more enjoyment for the little things. Its like all of my senses have become more sensitive and heightened.

I see how this will be difficult to get through and how I will never be the same afterwards. I have already internalised and been angry for all of the bad changes, but now I'm starting to see how my life will be changed for the good by the process. Things that would have been left unspoken for years are being spoken now. We are growing together and finding a deeper appreciation and maturity in our love and our family. My appreciation for the power of motherhood has grown and I will forever be a different mother to my children because of this experience. Most people don't go through losing a parent until they are older and have already raised their children. That definitely would still be my first choice - but I can see how I will appreciate my time as a Mother more now that I realize how sacred and how impactful the love of a Mother really is.

Don't mistake my meaning here: I'm not saying I'm glad this is happening! I'm saying that despite what is happening, we will be able to come out of it better because that is what my Mom taught us to do. Not only in her words but through her example.

She taught us to be strong.
She taught us to be resilient.
And when life handed my Mom crappy circumstances she turned around and made the sweetest lemonade.

Here is the recipe:
3 lemons: Mark, Brian, and my Dad ;)
1 orange: Me
and 1 sweet cup of sugar: Mom
Juice the fruit and mix with sugar and 2 quarts of water.
Its the best lemonade you will ever drink! No,really I'm not joking. Try it!

1 comment:

Grandma Caroline said...

That is a beautiful written blog. I love you too Girly!