Monday, August 2, 2010

Eight Years

I don't know how this slipped up on me.

I'd remember, for just a moment...August first is coming.

Then, Ethan would cry or Jackson would get hurt or something else would distract me, and it slipped from my mind.

Until this morning, when I woke up.


Eight years ago yesterday (July 31) night, I said "Good Night Ms. Glenda.  I love you."  Then, I laid down on a palette of blankets loving laid out by Aunt Jeanie in her living room with Bart by my side.  Aunt Jeanie had so much on her mind, yet she still set up a nice spot for Bart and me, so we could be closer to his cancer stricken mother because we knew Ms. Glenda's days were at an end.

We did not know that this would be Ms. Glenda's last night on earth.  We felt impressed to stay the night that night, but I'd stayed at Jeanie's before, as had he, so we did not see this as out of the ordinary.  And by this time, death was only a welcome relief for her anyway.

And that morning, early, around six, Aunt Jeanie woke us from our sleep.

And without a word, we knew.  Ms. Glenda had went home to heaven where our Father in Heaven was waiting for her, to release her from the pain and suffering and agony of those last few months.  To make her body whole and complete and healthy and full again.  She had served her mission on this earth, it was time for the reward.

Our lives were changed forever, as happens from time to time.

We went through the day as we had to, calling people, making final plans, mindlessly eating.  I remember getting dressed and going into Ms. Glenda's room at her sister's house (she was too ill for her husband to care for her and work).  It was oddly still.

I remember being happy that she was no longer in pain, but so selfishly sad for me.  I had lost my best girl friend.  The grandmother of my unborn children was in Heaven, playing with them before they came here...but that was not what I wanted.  That was not my plan!  My plan was for Ms. Glenda to be there for those grandchildren.  To babysit them while Bart and I went out to dinner, to go shopping with me for the perfect birthday presents for them.  Ms. Glenda would tell my children about their father as a child, take them to his childhood places, tell them stories about PawPaw and Miss MawMaw.  Yes, I know that I have a mother and I love her dearly and she is a wonderful grandmother, but I wanted my children to have TWO grandmothers.  Heck, I had THREE!

But, alas, that was not to be.  I realize I am not the only one who lost someone that day.  I lost a FRIEND and a mother in law.  Bart lost his MOTHER.  His BEST FRIEND.  Ronnie lost his WIFE.  Jeanie and the others lost their SISTER.  They'd all known her longer then me.

I cling greedily to the little moments we had, before she became ill.  The Monday nights of fried chicken and wrestling, the late night trip to KMart, the girlie gossip as we had a Mary Kay party.  I am so grateful that we were inspired to take her up on all her offers to come over and eat supper almost every other night.  That I didn't just hang out with Bart watching t.v., but that I sat at the dining table as she stood in the kitchen cooking up our favorites, chicken and dumplings, fried chicken, roast beef, hotdog jambalaya.  Those are the moments I treasure...the moments that I recall when I want to remember her.

So, today, as I remembered my mother in law, Glenda Cecile Falgout Remington, I remembered her smile, her laugh, and her deep love and devotion for her children.  And I tried a little harder to be the best mother I could be.  I will try to take her example of sacrifice and service and give more to others.  Not be so selfish and thoughtless.  I want to live my life so my family can be together forever.  I do not want for my children to feel lost when I one day go, but to know we will be reunited again in Heaven.

This is a blessing.  It is a privilege.  And I am thankful for having that in my life.

Thank you Ms. Glenda for helping me grow into a woman.  For showing me some mothering skills, cooking skills, family skills.  For raising a selfless son, who works hard and gives it all to his family without question or complaint.

I am a better woman because of you, and I am so grateful for every minute, the good and the bad, that I was able to share with you.

I love you and will one day be reunited with you in heaven.  Then I will show you how awesome my fried chicken is because of you :)

1 Words to brighten my day:

Crissy said...

Jess, this was so beautiful. Ms. Glenda sounds like she was such an amazing woman! I bet she'd be very proud of your fried chicken! (Although I've never eaten it, I bet it's delicious!) Love you!