The honest answer is, I’m still not sure. It’s been nine weeks since Gran left our house in an ambulance for the last time, it’s been six weeks since she died. Part of me has still failed to take it all in. Part of the benefit of Alive Hospice is lifetime grief counseling for all the family members affected. This past week, they called to see when I was coming and if I wanted to bring the kids in for counseling. And, then it hit me, I have still failed to fully grieve. If I went to counseling right now, I don’t have a clue what I would say. And, if you know me well, you know not knowing what to say is a rare situation.
Then, I feel like not having lost my marbles yet, or not being in a state of gut wrenching grief over losing my grandmother makes me a terrible person. On more than one occasion, the kids have asked forgiveness for not being super sad that Grandmother died. And, I constantly remind them, it’s okay. Dementia is a terrible disease, advanced CHF is a terrible disease, diabetes is a terrible disease, and Grandmother wasn’t truly living. Dying, and being restored in her fully glory and living with our Heavenly Father in complete peace is an amazing gift for any of us; especially for Grandmother who was living in such a broken body. We all have moments of little memories of quirky things Gran did and said around the house that bring us back to a moment of tears. But, for the most part we’re still living in the sense of relief of a huge burden being lifted from our shoulders. I would do it all again in a heartbeat, even knowing how long and how hard it would be. Yet, our grief is also tempered with a bit of relief for her, and for us. And, I hope the rest of the world can respect that for us, and be okay that is just the place we’re in.
The last 6 weeks has been a pretty constant blur of movement around our house. The last 2 weeks of school brought many activities, added on top was Lexi Kate’s 4th Grade Walk, and elementary school graduation. In addition, I’ve had a pretty crazy work load, as is pretty typical for my industry. But, I will say that this 2nd quarter was the largest single quarter I have had in terms of volume in my entire real estate career. In fact, in my 10 year real estate career there have only been 2 FULL YEARS that have topped the volume I did this quarter. I don’t say that to boast on my own behalf, but to shout the goodness of God. There is absolutely no way whatsoever that I could have kept it all together had it not been for His mercies new every morning and His grace and strength sustaining me. We’ve also had a family vacation squeezed in. Lexi Kate had the opportunity to take some master dance classes in L.A. with her dance studio. They were at The Edge, Debbie Allen, and Disney Entertainment. Jeff, Sam, and I flew in a couple days after she got there, and added on a few extra days to take in Disneyland, Universal Studios Hollywood, and San Diego. I should have LK write a guest post about our adventures out West. It was great to have that time as a family, but this Southern Girl isn’t a huge fan of California.
This past weekend I took the kids to my Great Grandparents Family Farm in Dukedom, KY/TN. The farm straddles the KY/TN line, and has been in our family for generations. My Great-Uncles and their kids all still live on the farm. I really wish my Grandfather had kept his portion of the farm so we still had a piece of that. There is just something truly magical and healing to the soul on a farm. The kids got to see momma chicks and ducks with their eggs, saw a duck hatch, cows, sheep, baby lambs, rabbits, beagles, rode horses, went fishing, and climbed hay bails with their cousins. We had no internet or cell service which made working a multiple offer situation a tad interesting. But, it was perfect! I wish we had been able to go back more often. It was so good for me to see my cousins that I grew up playing with and their kids enjoying our family heritage. My uncles now lease out their land for other farmers to work. But, Larry still has the animals. I told Jeff I wanted to sell our house and buy into the farm. I don’t think I could actually go through with uprooting the kids from Franklin, we love it so much. But, I could certainly get used to the pace of farm life. And, the excuse to have a couple dozen dogs.
Because I have a reputation of always having a well thought out plan, and always doing something big, everyone keeps asking what’s next for us. I truly don’t know what’s next. I have to let things continue to simmer down a bit and just trust God in His timing to reveal what lies ahead on the Woodford Road. But, for now, we all need to rest in His presence and recharge for a good long while. Not having a plan, not having a next, or not having a new story is just healthy for all of us. Even for me, as much as it goes against everything I believe in.