Friday, February 5, 2010

A Different Kind of Love

I am going to Toledo tomorrow [Friday] to spend the night with the extended family.
My Grandpa's funeral is on Saturday.
I need to see my family. It's so strange how you can be perfectly okay without seeing them for a certain amount of time and then one day life strikes and you find yourself struggling to get through the week before you see them.

Now let's just hope the snow is kind to my poor little car <3


This is the journal entry I wrote for my senior seminar class. When I wrote it I felt as though I needed to keep it personal, bu right now, at 2am, after an emotional exhausting day, I want to share it.

I am not wearing a veil or all black, but I need time to mourn. I am actually wearing more pink and all of blankets, but that has more to do with what was clean and the temperature of my house than any sort of cultural tradition. My Grandpa Kenny passed away early Sunday morning while he slept. He was ninety-three years old and while that was enough time to live a plentiful life, it does not mean I do not need to take time to reflect.

My Grandpa Kenny outlived two wives (each whom he was with for over twenty-five years). He was a brilliant engineer and a crazy driver. I visited him in January and I think this is why I need to take more time than I have with other deaths. There is probably a real name for this, but I am going to call it the “but I just saw him phenomenon”. My Grandma Pearl and my Aunt Darlene passed away my sophomore year and junior year, respectively. It had been a full year before their deaths that I last saw them. When Fred, a good friend from church, passed away it had been awhile since I had seen him too. I only go to Florida every once in a great while. I hardly attend my home church because I am never in Ohio anymore. I would not see them anyways; this makes their deaths less real. However, I just visited my Grandpa the week before school began. While I know it was his time and his small existence exhausted my Uncle, whom my Grandpa lived with, strong emotions show up when I try to imagine that he is not physically or mentally here at all.

Not seeing my Aunt Darlene, who was so young when she passed, and my Grandma Pearl while I was in Florida this January made their deaths more real too. Sometimes I feel like I am trying to be sad for more than one passing. I am sad for all that my Uncle Dick has balanced and I am sad that my mom and her siblings had to deal with her mother passing away so young. My mom’s mom passed weeks after she graduated from college, but a couple of weeks before she was married. Dealing with one death, by itself would be much simpler than balancing all of these old and new hurts.
I cannot help, but wonder if I would be taking this all as deeply if I were not talking about death in both senior seminar, world religions, and my house (where friends of Emma and David live).

On January 18th I wrote this in my journal/blog and I keep reading it because I am feeling it even more than when I wrote it:

M: ...she's a youth pastor or, well, young adult pastor I guess
S: Eh, youth pastor. We're still youth. We're still lost.
M: Yes, we are still lost.
What do you do when someone who is part of your life is no longer there? What do you do to bridge the gap?

[... Scroll to January 18th to read the middle section of this entry....]

Death hath not touched it all, dead though the house of it seems!

And as true or not true as that may be, I still need to mourn and most people I know still need that time to continue. And either way you look at it, it's tough.

[end of blog]

This week has been tough. I canceled all but one of my Monday meetings and work calls and stayed in bed until 3. I have been sleeping more than normal and I spend a lot of time just talking about nothing to my housemates to try and process where I am at. I am a very fortunate person as I have great housemates (for the first time in four years), as well as communities all over that still send me positive vibes. I received love and encouragement via facebook from friends, friends’ boyfriends, pastors, family friends, and people from both of my abroad experiences. I try to focus on them.

On Saturday I will be in Ohio for my Grandpa’s funeral and I am looking forward to it. DeRose family funerals are, in general, a good time of tears and laughter… just the way funerals should be. I just need to remember to breathe.

[end of Senior Sem Journal entry]

I need to sleep.

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