I am going to be very honest right now, something that is hard for bloggers because well... a blog is public and always available for the world to see... but I feel that I need to share what is going on with me right now, I don't know why. Maybe it is because it is therapeutic...maybe someone else needs to hear this, I really don't know why but what has been swelling in my heart to share is finally coming into fruition in words.
This year hasn't been an easy one. I have mentioned before that there have been a lot of changes in our family recently. We are adjusting to our kids getting older and the challenges that come with each new year of their lives. James and I both are working for ourselves for the first time which is exhilarating and frightening all at the same time. Our careers have taken us to new horizons and driven us farther than we could have ever expected which is wonderful for us both since we enjoy being challenged. So needless to say this year was a year of growth and accomplishment for our little family, it has been busy and stressful, yet rewarding all at the same time.
With my travel schedule and James' crazy hours we were looking forward to a quiet holiday season at home with the kids... Just our little family. This Christmas was to be the first time that we were to be home for the holidays. It is hard to believe that we have been in our home for 3 years now and have not spent a Christmas here. So it goes without saying that the kids were excited and WE were excited to be able to see them run down the stairs Christmas morning in our own home.
You know what they say about plans....
Last week I sat with my daughter and taught her how to hand sew and it brought back memories of learning myself from my grandmother and great grandmother. We sat together and I filled with pride as I shared this simple knowledge, knowing now what feelings my grandmother and great grandmother must have felt when they taught me all those years ago.
Almost on cue, my mother sent me a text while I was stitching with my daughter.
"PLEASE PRAY, YOUR GRANDMA IS NOT DOING WELL AND IS IN THE HOSPITAL"
My heart sank. Still as I write this it is hard for me to digest all that is going on.
The next day James and I were working and my mother called him, I could hear her voice on the phone and knew as James left the room that something was wrong.
My body sank, deep, hollow... almost hiding from what I knew I was about to hear.
I waited for James to come back and when he did I could tell that he was exactly like me... not wanting to have to say what he now had to tell me.
"YOUR GRANDMOTHER HAS CANCER, SHE DOESN'T HAVE LONG... WE NEED TO GO HOME FOR CHRISTMAS"
Shock overcomes your body as you try and reconcile reality with your hearts desire. As you try and gently come out of that deep hollow place and gently allow your self to realize the severity of what this new reality is.
It took sometime, but eventually I caved and cried like I have never cried before. The death of my Grandfather 8 years prior came back and the reality that I now was losing my only remaining grandparent became to much to bear. I have never heard myself wail before... and even as I write this I can't help but tear up.
It is hard when you have to ask God the tough questions but without that opportunity, those questions would replay over and over again in my mind. So I did.
WHY MY GRANDMOTHER?
I am grateful that I can ask these questions and that God prepares my heart for the really tough answers. But the answers are what bring clarity to the whole situation for me.
You see, God opened my eyes to purpose. We each have such tremendous purpose and sometimes that purpose is passed down from generation to generation. I am blessed to be a part of a beautiful legacy of women, I wish I could go into detail about the amazing women in my life, but that will have to be another post.
What God showed me is that my loss of my Grandmother isn't quite a loss. He showed me my heart and the space that she takes in it now, but what happened next is what really surprised me. God showed me my Grandmother preparing the space in my heart that should be vacant with her pending death. She was preparing the vacancy in my heart to now open up and allow love for others in.
You see.. THIS is the legacy that my Grandmother and her Mother, even my Mother have given me. As I saw this image of my Grandmother tending to my heart and preparing it for others it reminded me that THIS is what she would want. She would want me to share a message of LOVE for others and a heart for Christ. This is her message and just like the simple knowledge that she shared with me all those years ago with a needle and thread, she is once again sharing this simple knowledge of compassion and understanding.
I do not know why this is happening right now, but what I do know is why this is happening to my Grandmother and to me. My Grandmother is ready, she misses my Grandfather deeply and has told my Mother "I am ready to see my sweetheart and my Lord". My Grandmother is a beautiful soul and the bravest person I have known. I can only pray that I may have the opportunity in my life to share the gift that she has given me.
Although it hurts deeply knowing that her days are few and I still fall apart at any given moment... My heart is at peace knowing that she is passing the torch to me, she is preparing me for my future and leaving me not with an emptiness but with a space for LOVE. After all, isn't this what life is all about?
This is one of the only pictures I have of my grandparents, it was taken right before my Grandfather fell ill and probably the only picture in existence of them kissing (they were a very modest couple).
I love this and although this year has been tough, busy and scary... What should have devastated me is now giving me an opportunity for growth and new perspective. I LOVE my grandparents. I always always ALWAYS will. They will never leave my heart, but they have left their impression so strong that it polarizes me like a magnet towards their goodness and love. That is what I have to remember when my Grandmother does pass. It is my turn to take over where she left off. It is a blessing ♥
I will be taking the remainder of the year to spend time with my family, I want to be able to soak up what moments I can while we are in California spending time with both of our families. With this in mind, I will be taking a break from blogging for the next few weeks. I will try and get some fun stuff up before CHA and will continue to share on my Facebook page as I can.
Thank you in advance for your support and well wishes, it has been hard for me to understand just why I needed to share this, but now I know that I needed to. It feels good to share real life stuff and not just always the fun crafty stuff... It just feels real and that feels good.
Wishing you the best this Christmas and that you are able to treasure your family as the biggest gift of all. Hug them, love them, reconcile with them. Take the steps towards happiness in your heart and let your family be a part of this.
Merry Christmas with much love,
Liz Hicks and Family ♥