There’s No Place Like Home

Thanks for all of your kind words and condolences on the passing of my grandfather.  It was a weekend full of laughter and tears, but fortunately more laughter than tears.  A lot of laughter, in fact.  I have a great group of cousins who are all about the same age, and it was good to be together.

As strange as it sounds, I’m not sad.  I wasn’t close to my granddad, although I loved him and felt secure in his love.  He lived far away, and I rarely saw him as an adult.  His children will miss him, though.  Particularly my dad.  They were very close.

I have to say that I enjoyed the solitude of traveling alone and staying in my own hotel room.  The night I arrived, after going out to dinner with some family members, I returned to my room alone.  As I slipped the key card in the door, I had a momentary lapse of sanity when I felt a twinge of loneliness.  That lasted a millisecond. 

I quickly returned to my senses when I laid my weary eyes on that queen-size bed and realized that I was utterly and blissfully ALONE.  I threw myself spread-eagle across the bed and just lay there reveling in the sheer ALONENESS — a mother’s dream date.

Then I did something so exciting and so uncharacteristic, I’m almost afraid to share it here on The Blawg. 

I went to the potty ALONE. 

Have you even imagined such bliss?  There was no one banging on the door, no one begging to wash their hands in the sink alongside me, and best of all, no one asking to see my "pee-you".  I’ll leave you to ponder that one on your own time.

I slept like a brick and woke up with a start, refreshed and completely rested at the unheard of hour of 8AM.  I don’t remember the last time I slept that late.  That was definitely the highlight of the weekend.  Well, that and seeing all my family of course.

The second night I shared a room with my future sister-in-law (my baby brother is engaged to be married next fall) and although her visit was brief, it was great to see her and get to know her better.

Yesterday after the funeral service, I laid my rose on the coffin and said a silent good-bye to my granddad.  Then after about a hundred and thirty-one good-byes, I boarded my plane and headed home.  Travel was uneventful, which is always an answer to prayer. 

We actually arrived in Philly about 20 minutes ahead of schedule, and as we were sitting in the plane on the tarmac waiting for our gate to be available, the pilot informed us that while all the air traffic was running about 45 minutes late, we were given precedence because we were transporting a heart for a heart transplant operation here in Philadelphia.  How cool is that!?

When I got to the car, the kids were pretty much beside themselves.  Well, my son was "hungry and bored" but the girls acted excited to see me, particularly Baby R.  She kept exclaiming over and over with glee, "Mommy!!!!! Mommy!!!!" 

They were a sight for sore eyes, I can tell you that.  As much as I enjoyed the peace and quiet of the motel room and the busyness of the family gatherings, there is nothing quite like rocking that precious little angel to sleep, my cheek pressed against hers, breathing in the sweet scent of her baby breath. 

After I left her room, I went to say good-night to the big kids, but they were already off to dreamland.  I planted a long kiss on each of their cheeks and said a silent thank-you to the One who has blessed me immeasurably more than I can ask or imagine.

This morning the baby won’t leave my side.  She’s sitting on my lap as I type, and she’s letting me kiss on her and love on her till my heart’s content.  She’s such a snuggly little one.  It’s rainy and cold outside, the perfect day for staying close to home and getting my house back in order.  I hope to get caught up on some of your blogs too.

Rest in peace, Granddad.