Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Parting Is Such Sweet Sorrow

Today I will be closing the door on nine wonderful, wacky days with three equally wonderful and wacky grandchildren. My daughter-in-law, Heather, is doing considerably better now (although I think it will be a while until she feels 100%), and my own life is calling me back to home and hearth and husband (not necessarily in that order). Despite the fact that I will be thrilled to sleep in a regular bed again, it's not easy to say good-bye to these remarkable little people that have, by turns, entertained, astounded, and (occasionally) overwhelmed me with their antics. Each one is a truly unforgettable character, and I am continually grateful that they belong to our family. How I love them!

It will also be hard to say good-bye to their parents, whose company I have enjoyed immensely. It has been a blessing to see how devoted they are to their children and how hard they work to teach them the gospel. Their quick answers in Family Home Evening and thoughtful prayers every morning and night are evidence that these three youngsters are learning the things they need to know to find happiness in this life and the next. And they have not only their parents' examples to follow, but the examples of generous ward members who brought meals and gave rides and tended kids when needed. We've seen service in action, and it has been a beautiful thing.

I've been thinking this morning about how interconnected we all are, even in this new world where parents and their grown children rarely share a neighborhood...and only occasionally a city. It is comforting to know that, though I am miles away in Northern California, I can hop on a plane and be here in slightly over an hour to visit my loved ones. I can go to a supposedly "strange" church on Sunday and find people who feel comfortable and familiar, people who selflessly hold my place for me as a mother and grandmother by loving and serving my children and grandchildren when I am not available to do so. I appreciate them more than I can say.

Finally, I am grateful for the Lord's ever-present gifts of healing and support. At one point, Heather was extremely ill...frighteningly so...yet our hearts and spirits were upheld by priesthood power and faith in God's plan for us. We acknowledge His hand in all things and thank Him for His goodness. The blessing of Heather's continuing recovery is one we do not take for granted.

Nor will we. 

©2003 Susan Noyes Anderson, His Children, Vantage Point Press
Photograph ©2003 by Anita Schiller

The peaceful tinkle of a bell,
a sunrise dawning clear––
The Shepherd may not be in view
but He is always near.


Fiauna said...

I love, love, LOVE the verse at the bottom of your post. I mean, I really, truly love it. It made me tear up. You're fantastic!

Momza said...

I needed this today. Thank you.

Natalie said...

I can only echo what Fiauna and Momza said.

So happy to hear that Heather is doing so much better.

jen said...

I think I could take that messy face plate-on-head picture about every day around here.
Glad to see you enjoyed your time together.
And thanks for your concern and comments. Post to soon follow, after I get this Elizabeth Edwards stuff off my chest . . .

K2cole said...

You make me look forward to being a Grandma (Brenn is only 18!) in the future...what lucky grandchildren you have and they are so beautiful too.

Hope home is not too quiet.

Jill said...

What cute pictures! Family is the BEST!

karen said...

Your grandkids are so cute! Mine will be here in July and I can't wait! The ending verse is beautiful - so simple and sweet. You should put it to music.

swedemom said...

Sue, this is totally unrelated to your post. I have enjoyed reading your comments on Segullah for a while now. I'm also a fellow commenter on the blog, Tiffany W. Anyhow, in your comment about Mother's day, you mentioned you have lupus. I also have lupus. One thing that has impressed me so much in your comments is your faithful perspective and your sunny attitude. I love hearing from other women who struggle with lupus, but find joy, happiness and fulfillment in their lives. Thanks for being an example!

Heather Anderson said...

Thanks for hoping on a plane to come be with our family during this difficult time. We are blessed to have you as Mom and Grandma. Love the poem, as always.

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