There in Spirit

Today started out just like any other Thursday. I pressed the snooze button when my alarm went off, and then spent some time lying in bed checking my e-mail and giving Marly a morning kiss before finally getting up. Parks and Recreation played in the background as I did my makeup and hair. I was indecisive about what to wear, and was behind schedule as I ran out the door. Once I found a spot in the crowded school parking lot, I put mascara on as I looked into my car mirror. Finally, I hopped out of the car and raced across campus to my Oceanography class, eating a yogurt and reciting the speech I was supposed to give in my Communication class along the way.

Class was boring, but I made it through and went to the science center to do a bit of studying before my next class. As I sat there trying to memorize the names of ocean currents, I saw my phone lying next me on the table start buzzing with my aunt's name flashing across the lit screen. Something sank inside me and I debated whether or not to answer. I knew that this was the call I had been dreading to receive. I quickly decided to step out of the room to take the call and that is when it happened.

After receiving that call, I went back to the table my stuff was lying at. Suddenly, none of that mattered anymore. I sat down and waited for something to happen, for something to switch on or off inside of me. Nothing happened for a few minutes, but then it started. I felt the hot, tiny tears slip out of my eyes and onto the polka dotted dress I was wearing. I sat there for a moment longer before shoving all my things into my backpack and rushing out of the building. As I started up the stairs, I suddenly stopped and let it out.

I told my teacher that I wouldn't be giving my speech that day and went home for the day. I'm not really sure how I am supposed to feel today. My Aunt Andrea has passed. I was planning to fly to see her tomorrow and spend the weekend with my family. I am still going to go, but things will be different than I had planned. Somehow, though, I feel that they might be better.

I'm definitely heartbroken, but I understand that this is what was best for her. As the weeks went on, she was in more and more pain, and less of herself. Up until the end, she remembered who everyone was, but the tumors on her brain caused her to forget things like what a fork is used for. Though I would have loved to see her no matter the condition she was in, I know that she didn't really want to be seen like that.

I am still happy to be going to Washington DC this weekend, as many of my family members will be also flying out to be together. There will now be a memorial service on Saturday and we will still celebrate her 70th birthday on Sunday, with her there in spirit.

All I can say is this: Hold the ones you love very close to you and cherish each moment together.

Aunt Andrea, I love you and always will. I know you will always be out there looking after me.

Danica Pardini said...

Sweet Jess, you are such a beautiful writer. I am so sorry for your loss. Prayers for you and your family.

Laura @ Inspiration.Sparks said...

I am so sorry for your loss Jess! As i read your recount of the day it brought back memories of when i got the same kind of call, about my husbands grandfather. I was in class and as soon as i saw my mom's name pop up on my phone i knew something was wrong.

I am so sorry that you didn't get to see her one last time, but i am happy that you'll be able to fly to D.C. and be with your family <3! I love that you guys are still celebrating her 70th! She definitely will be attending in spirit! Prayers go out to you and your family.

abby - little city adventures said...

So sorry Jess <3
I'll miss seeing you this weekend like we planned but this time with your family will be essential to all of you healing from this loss. I am glad that you get to be at the funeral to say good bye. I read this during intermission at the play I went to this week and almost cried in my seat, your writing is so powerful. Proud of you for being so open about writing this out for the world. <3

Jess // Foreign Room said...

Thanks Amber! I appreciate that <3

Jess // Foreign Room said...

Thank you so much Danica. I am feeling loved with everyone's warm wishes and kind thoughts. xoxo

Jess // Foreign Room said...

I have never really experienced something like that, but I know it will be a day I will likely never forget.

Thank you so much, Laura. It was a great trip and I am really glad that I went!

Jess // Foreign Room said...

Thanks, Abby. I think everything went really well and in the end, everything worked out as best as it could. I am happy that she is not suffering anymore, even though it means heartache for our family.