Monday, March 10, 2014

What A Roller Coaster Ride~

These past few weeks have been like a Roller Coaster ride. There has been the slow climb to the top with the accelerating race to the bottom. Sometimes, it seems like I am up and down and swinging around. At times I am holding my breath and next I am screaming (crying) like I can't stop. To tell you the truth I don't like the Roller Coaster at all; but I do like life even with all of it's up's and downs. I am grateful for the the opportunity to be on this challenging ride called life.
On the way to Washington for our Grandson's baptism, we learned that my sweet Aunt Della had passed away.  We were in the Denver Airport at the time and it was a difficult moment. Some would say, why would you be upset; she was 100 years old and had a remarkable life? Or, it has been said that since she was in pain during the last several months of her life; it was a blessing she could go. I would agree with all of this but, she was such a dear aunt and along with my parents and brother who have gone before her; I will miss her more than mere words can express. She was like a second mother and I loved her. She had so many wonderful characteristics. She was delightful to be around. She was intelligent, wise, caring and just so much fun. She was such a good listener. She  knew my thoughts and feelings about my own life. She was  such a beautiful lady in every way. Although almost totally blind she would always dress up in a lovely pantsuit with her jewelry on. She loved the color pink and had saved out a pink pantsuit to be buried in. She looked so beautiful in this suit and she was adorned with special pearl earrings and necklace. I am sure she liked that.
Losing a loved one to death is  a poignant moment. I am grateful for the memories of all those I have lost in death. You don't ever forget them and the loss never goes away. It is part of life. It is part of the Roller Coaster ride that you said you would take when you left the pre-mortal life to come here. 
My Aunt had a lovely funeral and I am sure she was present in the spirit and I know she loved it. My lovely Aunt Della, I love you and I will miss you so much!

We arrived at my daughters home and enjoyed 4 wonderful days with their family. Little William age eight was baptized and confirmed by his father.

Dave and William
Tiffani, Dave and William

Roger and I with Dave and Tiffani's family along 
with Dave's Parents and his Sister's family~
 He is now a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. On Sunday in their Sacrament meeting he was presented as one of the newest members in the ward. What a very choice little boy he is. During the entire hour of the Sacrament meeting he was sitting quietly holding his scriptures and listening to the testimonies of the gospel that were given by various members of the this ward in their Fast and Testimony meeting.
 Our days there went fast but we enjoyed being with this endearing family. Each of our four precious grandchildren were so much fun in each of their own individual ways. On Sunday evening my husband and son in law gave my dear daughter a priesthood blessing. She has a physical condition called EOE. Her father gave her a marvelous blessing; and it was a tearful moment for all. I will treasure the memories of this visit. 
We came home on Monday and the week was filled with many activities. I was blessed to be able to write my  Aunt Della's Obituary. Just doing this one thing was so sad but sweet too. 
I had completed  my Aunt's history for her 100th Birthday in September. We had worked on it for a long time. 
As I wrote her thoughts and feeling about her life experiences; my life was elevated by her truly remarkable journey. Just to hear her side of the many things she lived through was fascinating.  She lived when there was a flu epidemic in 1922 that took many lives. Her mother and two sisters and herself had the flu. My mother told me once that their ears were so infected that blood drained from them. Meanwhile, my grandfather was trying to help others in near by farms along with his own family who were ill. While doing this he became sick himself. Within a few days he died of complications from this vicious flu.  My Aunt was 8 years old, my mother 6 years old and my other Aunt Alene,14 months old.  This left my grandmother a widow at a very young age. Life was harsh for them.
Aunt Della also lived during the great Depression, World War I, World War II, Korean War, Vietnam, Deseret Storm, and other conflicts since then. Her only son served in the Vietnam War, Desert Storm and served with the Red Cross. She is well acquainted with the trauma of wars.
In her youth, she lived in a home without any modern conveniences.  There is nothing like an outhouse and not having inside water. We laughed together about some of the things that she had to do in this era. There were so many inventions through her 100 years of life. For instance, electricity, telephones, cars, airplanes, radio, television, computers, and many other items that make life easier for us. She thought the airplane was one of the greatest inventions. She said her father was an inventor of sorts and that he wanted to design an airplane. Oh, the fun stories she shared with me. My Aunt was not only beautiful, but spunky, stubborn and just delightful to be around. She loved to visit and wherever she went she was loved  by those who knew her. She had many that called her a friend. 
During these past few weeks I have witnessed beautiful moments of love and also sad moments of grief. Each of these experiences have left me with many thoughts to ponder upon.
This weekend has been  filled with a spirit of love. I soaked up the spirit during our temple shift. I have such a deep love for the temple. This is the one place that I can go to feel peace, love and to learn and grow in my understanding of The Great Plan Of Happiness. How beautiful are the thoughts that our Heavenly Father and Savior Jesus Christ provided the way for us to someday walk with them again. There are so many blessings that come from Temple service. 
Our Ward Conference today was so inspiring. I was deeply touched by the messages given.  Our ward choir sang the song: "In The Coming Day". It sums up my feeling of these past weeks. The up's and down's are all part of the plan for us all. My greatest desire is to someday see my Savior ( in the coming day.)


Denise said...

My sweet friend, this was such a heart touching post. So sorry about the passing of your dear aunt. I know you truly loved her, she was a beautiful lady. God bless dear William, so happy for him. Praying for your daughter, love you.

Barb said...

Hi LeAnn!

Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts and feelings about your aunt Della - I can see that she was very loved, especially by you. And, what an awesome opportunity you had to write her history, you are amazing! I think it is so great that you had such a wonderful relationship with her, I'm sure she loved you so much. She is so beautiful!

I have been on a real roller coaster ride lately too! It seems like life just keeps handing me more than I sometimes think I can handle...I was just put in as 2nd counselor in the YW! Why oh why do they want an old lady like me?! So much to do, and so little time!

Loved the video - so touching! Also loved the pictures of Tiffany, Dave and their sweet family, so many sweet memories for you and Roger!

Hugs and Love to you both!


singing/granny said...

Dear friend! I am so sad for your aunt's passing. Although I know she is in a good place, it is hard to lose the company of those we love so dearly. I know you will miss her.
Life does have a way of riding us up and down that roller coaster. I have been on it myself lately. So glad you were able to attend your grandson's baptism. I know that is a highlight. Take care and many blessings and hugs! Melody

Christy Monson said...

I am so sorry to hear of the passing of your Aunt Della. What a sweet wonderful lady she was, and how blessed she was to have you to minister to her. I know the feelings you have and the struggles. There isn't a day that goes by that I don't think of my mother and miss her. You will be the same. My love and prayers are with you. Hugs!

Debbie said...

i don't like to feel busy and rushed. i try very hard not to have am overwhelming schedule. perhaps i miss a few things but those things i do, i enjoy more!!

Grammy Staffy said...

I am so glad to be out of the hospital and able to visit you again. I've missed being able to read your blog. The internet in the hospital was not good and I was too sick anyway. I'm thankful to be home and feeling better. I'm thankful also for your prayers and support.

What an amazing life your sweet Aunt Della had. She looks like a beautiful person, inside and out. Aren't you glad that you got her history done for her. I'm sure your obituary was well done and touching. I know you will miss her.
Congrats on William's baptism. I love the family picture. You all look so happy.
So far my blood clot is behaving and I'm still here. It is so good to be out of the hospital. I published pictures of my adventure in my blog post today. I hope you will drop by and say hello.
Have a great week. Hugs, Lura

Mom of 12 said...

Such a beautiful post about your sweet Aunt. My prayers are with you.

The Adventurer said...

I am so sorry for your loss of Aunt Della...My Dad lost his oldest brother (my uncle) last month and it really hit him hard. We had hope to make the funeral but an ice storm hit and we had to turn around after driving for 4 hours. Luckily my Dad did speak to his brother by phone just a couple of days before he passed, but he still felt so down that he wasn't there in time. Sending hugs and I know both of them are looking down and smiling:)

The Adventurer said...

I am so sorry for your loss of Aunt Della...My Dad lost his oldest brother (my uncle) last month and it really hit him hard. We had hope to make the funeral but an ice storm hit and we had to turn around after driving for 4 hours. Luckily my Dad did speak to his brother by phone just a couple of days before he passed, but he still felt so down that he wasn't there in time. Sending hugs and I know both of them are looking down and smiling:)


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