Moments with Mama… and the Godfather

279 days ago, Mama went to heaven.  Part of me wanted to run behind her and part of me left with her.  Alzheimers did all it could to take from us, and yes, it succeeded in taking two things most precious ~ Mama and her memories.  But she won in the end by gaining back her healed body and all of her memories; we won in that we still have our own, faded or not.  We still have our wonderful friends, some of whom we’ve never met in person, who have been where we were and where we are, who have comforted and encouraged us.  For those who have said the pain will never go away, it will just change – so far, so true.

I don’t cry every day but simple things get me started.  Because we live a half mile from our church, I ride by it every day, and I never miss saying “Hey Mama” as I do and I throw up my hand.  For some blessed reason, I can see her headstone and bright flowers all the way in the back and it makes me smile.  Mitch is not a crier (I told you he’s always been the oddball:) but he hurts.  He was Mama’s boy and it’s not something he wants to talk about often.  Daddy still cries almost daily and takes a rose to Mama once a week. He’s told us we’re in charge of continuing that as long as we’re able and I guess if he goes before us, we’ll have to take him little tractors or something when we take Mama’s roses.  But all in all, we are grateful, grateful Mama was able to take a ride seven days before she left us, that she was only bedridden six days, that we have each other, that Daddy is still 100 mph, okay, maybe 98, but he’s speedier than me and Mitch combined and has a much better memory.  And we all still laugh and cry together as a family just missing the puzzle piece that was part of the heart.  Eventually in God’s time, we’ll put the entire puzzle back together.

One of the things Mama always wanted to do was see the Grand Canyon.  A few months ago, Daddy talked often about wishing he had taken her.  One day I said, “Why don’t we just go?!” and as the words left my mouth, my heart raced at the thought of a plane crash, Daddy’s driving, my driving, Daddy’s ear-piercing ringtone going cross-country, being on a bus with strangers, figuring out the whole plan, but yes, “let’s do it!” So, come heck or high water, or should I say no gall stone or kidney stone, Daddy and I are embarking on a 16 day bus trip to the Grand Canyon!

Next week our adventure begins with 22 sites on the trip (and I sort of anticipate being the youngest one on the bus so that’s a bonus ego booster).

√ Housesitters lined up, Bald Eagle in charge (he seems rather excited, not sure why)

√ Tinkerbell taken care of (Daddy’s cat), she’ll be lost without him.

? Clothes… how do you pack for 16 days?!

√ Nerve pills

√ Camera

? Activity bag for Daddy on the bus… any toddler Moms got suggestions?

I joke but I know we’re going to make some amazing memories.  We are anxious about 16 days on a bus since neither of us are ever gone long, but Mama, she would be so excited. And I believe as we step up to the rim of God’s breathtaking creation, she’ll be looking at the canyon with us and take a breath herself, and she’ll cry, so happy that we made it.

I do ask for prayers for safety, peace, amazing sites, great people to meet, and lots of memories, lots! And that we’re still speaking when we get off the bus, hahaha.

Over the years, the grandkids and all of us have jokingly called Daddy the Godfather, not even sure why, but it stuck.  So as my journey of {mis}adventures with the Godfather unfolds, I’ll share a few updates along the way.  I apologize in advance!

Let the healing begin…. ♥


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