Monday, May 3, 2010

Nat's Fantastic Trip to Arizona

I had been thinking of my grandma Gerry for years...wanting to be in better contact, yearning to know more about this extraordinary woman, wishing I could see her one last time before she passed through the veil. Thanks to Tyson and Christine and Tyler, I got my chance. After 22 years, when I watched my sweet grandma waddle through the doorway of her Mesa, Arizona home, I'll admit I had a hard time controlling my emotions. Christine and I listened to her tell stories of her childhood and of her son "David". She had had some regrets, but her overall message was of hope, of finding the humor, and unbeknownst to her "Come what may, and love it". Choked through my tears, I told my grandma that I loved her so much and that she meant so much to me. She kept asking me, "Honey, are you okay?" to which I said yes and that I was so happy. I painted her fingernails and we discovered that we both loved gardening, bird watching, and "having a real good time" i.e. throwing parties! She invited us back the next day. When we arrived, we found that she had set out a table with all the fixin's, interspersed with her best figurines of rabbits, roses, and ornate crosses. On the table was a note telling us that she would be back soon, that she had gone to the store. We waited no more than five minutes when she pulled up in a white Dodge caravan, uncle Jack at the wheel. She unloaded all kinds of groceries and proceeded to slice onions, tomatoes, lettuce--set out chips and soda, meat, cheese, bread, and bakery cakes. Then she said, "We should say a prayer". She then repeated the Lord's prayer perfectly. After the prayer, she got a little dizzy, so we helped her find a seat and get comfortable. She then turned to Jack, held out her little fist and said, "We did it!" I was touched at the level of effort she truly had sacrificed for us. My heart swelled with love. After a visit over our feast, we started taking pictures and saying good-bye. All those pictures!! I don't think grandma has ever owned a camera. And between my dad and I, grandma has probably never taken so many pictures in her life! And we're nothing compared to Jace and Cortney! As I held my grandma Gerry's hand in farewell, she looked deep into my eyes. She said, "Nadalee, I love you. I love you. I love you, honey". It was hard for me to drive away.

Christine and Tyler--I miss you so much! I can hardly stand to be apart from all my family members. You are all so very dear to me. And all my wonderful friends--you know who you are. Christine, Tyler, and I had some competitive dice tournaments, golf card games, Dominoes with Aunt Donna, hiking in Sedona--beautiful red rock, frisbee games, eating at the Pita Jungle :), watching "Congo", attending Tyler's basketball game, wrestling with scouts, and enjoying every minute we spent together. It was a trip of a lifetime. All that I had hoped for and so much more. So...Scott and Aubrey's wedding '10 or BUST!!! See you there. :)