I know the Internet is a cold and impersonal medium to communicate something like this, (please forgive me), but thank you, friends, for all the love and care you showed my family in the passing of my Grandma. Your e-mails, phone calls, hugs, texts...everything were so very much appreciated. It was hard saying goodbye to Grandma, but she is with Jesus now, and though we're still sad, knowing that does make it easier (at least from my perspective).
Our time in South Dakota was good...not always easy, but good. All of my aunts, uncles and cousins were able to be there (this was the first time in a long time...last year at Grandpa and Grandma's 60th anniversary, one cousin and her husband were missing because she'd just had a baby). There were lots of times of laughter mixed in with the tears. Monday afternoon, we had a time of sharing stories about Grandma. I got to learn a lot of things I didn't know about her, and it was really enjoyable. It raised a few questions (exactly how many times did she have rheumatic fever?) but it was still fun nonetheless.
Tuesday was the graveside burial and memorial service. Like I said, those were rough (watching my Grandpa say goodbye was absolutely heartbreaking), but through it all, I had this underlying knowledge that Grandma was with Jesus; the body I was looking at was just that--a body. Her soul is free.
I could go on about the stories of God's grace throughout the whole process--the nurse in the park (next to my Grandparent's house) who started CPR right away, my mom's cousin who was also at the park and stayed with my Grandpa...really, you don't have to look too deep to see that He was there during the events that took place. Even in something as sad as death, He's there. And that, through all the sadness and mourning, gives me peace and joy.