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Saturday, February 27, 2016

Finding The Good

Earlier this week a few people began inquiring why my daily happiness posts on Instagram were missing.

In short, this week was hard. Really hard. I still found joy in small things every day but it didn’t feel appropriate to post them.

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Monday morning found me in bed trying my hardest to get over a rotten cold. It was no suprise to me that I had gotten sick despite my scrupulous hand washing and daily war on germs. The recent stressors of having two close relatives in the hospital had taken its toll.

I opened an email from my dear friend Jackie. She sadly informed me that her dear mother in law had unexpectedly passed away over the weekend and they were headed to Canada to make arrangments.

Lovely Marguerite. I had the pleasure of getting to know her when she came to Arizona to escape the cold Canadian winters. She was a wonderful cook and always cracked me up on how devoted she was to her afternoon stories aka soap operas. I also really appreciated her tips on ironing. She was a wonderful example of what a grandmother should be and I am sure I will remember many times in the future her love and devotion to family.

marguerite

On Tuesday Eric’s Uncle Steve entered the hospital. On Wednesday the world lost a lovely man who enjoyed adventure and traveling. Col. Davis Stevenson and his wife, Aunt June, were married for 61 years. A wonderful example for all couples.

Uncle Steve

On Wednesday my father in law was involved in a car accident. Thankfully, he was ok just a bit bumped and bruised. But by now I was really struggling to seek the good. Clinging only to the hope it is always there.

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Thursday brought with it another blow. We learned our former next door neighbor Gary had unexpectedly passed away. Gary was a character and brought comfort, joy and security to our entire neighborhood. My first encounter with Gary was him pulling into the driveaway on a loud Harley motorcycle complete with several tattoos.  But he came right over, introduced himself and offered to help in any way he could. He was a member of the Phoenix police department and that was such a comfort to me during the many months Eric had to travel away on business.

NAGRA Meeting, Denver, Colorado

Like the one night the Fashionista and I found a huge scorpion in the kitchen. It immediately scurried under the refridgerator. In order to kill it we would need to push the refridgerator out quickly. This would take two strong people. A third would need to do the deed. Wearing shorts I grabbed the first shoes I found in my closet ~ a pair of short glitter boots. I also grabbed a baseball bat to use as my scorpion weapon and headed over to Gary’s house to ask for help. Gary answered the door and immediately started cracking up at my appearence. But with his help we got the job done. Ever after he called me “Dorothy” on account of those sparkly boots.  

Gary Vigneault was a true contridiction and a shining example of why no one should ever judge a book by it’s cover. While many would consider Gary “a rough sort” I knew the man who would happily tell you how Jesus changed his life.

So yes, a hard week.

But there was goodness to be remembered despite it all and there will be, someday soon, goodness to found once more.

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During this time of Lent I am reflecting on love and grace. It’s sufficent for me.

Laura

“Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever.” ~ Psalm 23:6

23 comments :

Denise Runions said...

I'm so sorry you've been experiencing such a hard time. I'm afraid I haven't been dealing very well with a similar situation. After 7 years of taking care of our elderly mother who has dementia, my sister and I have finally been able to get her into a care facility (which she hates, of course).
My sister gets drunk and sends me vitriolic emails at 3:00 a.m. telling me everything I've done wrong for the last 40 years.
I've been unemployed on and off for the last 5 years, most recently for the last 10 months and have exhausted my life savings. I'm about to lose my house, the only thing I've ever wanted and have worked towards my entire life.
I have severe arthritis and, in spite of surgeries and drugs, will never walk very far again.
The man I loved more than I've ever loved anyone decided that I wasn't much fun lately and found another woman who was. He informed me just before Christmas that he really wanted to date my best friend but "couldn't do that to me". I'm not sure why he thought I might want to know that.
I must admit that I'm having a hard time coping with everything, but have no idea what to do about it. Mostly I just want to sleep.

Daniela said...

I'm sorry for this week of yours, so very hard, sweet Laura ... there are times when God really seems to want us to test ... I'm praying for your pains, my new friend, with heartfelt admiration and love

Daniela

Rita C. said...

What a week, Laura. The ironic thing of it all is that YOU may have very well been the good through the entire week for all those in your circle, just as the one phrase in your post here says. May blessings be yours.
Rita

Stacey said...

Laura, I hate that so many hard things are happening all at once. You keep looking for the positives and the good and it will be there. Just look at the first message here today....you helped that reader by sharing your hardships and encouragement.

Let's get together for lunch as soon as you can dig out for an afternoon.

Stacey

Laura Ingalls Gunn said...

Denise ~ my heart is just breaking for you this morning. I tried to contact you but you are listed as a "no reply blogger" and your Google + post had no information. I wanted to let you know that I am thinking of you and keeping you and your family in prayer. I was the guardian for my Papa Jack who had Alzheimer's/dementia and it is such a difficult disease. You can email me at any time. My contact information can be found at the top of the blog page. Just click on the button with the envelope on it.
Denise you have friends in the blogging community. We care for you. You matter.

Jeanie said...

Oh, Laura, I'm so very sorry for the losses, the deep concern for those you love and care about, for having to experience the very real emotions of grief for so many simultaneously. A bad week indeed. I hope you can find a bit of sun or a cozy blanket with which to wrap your heart and look ahead to the tough work of healing.

Sending you big cyber hugs and the best of heart wishes as you make that journey and good wishes to your father-in-law. I'm grateful he will be all right.

The Boston Lady said...

A rough week indeed, Laura. It always seems to come all at once, these sad moments. The thought of you going to your "rough" neighbor's house in those boots is priceless. There is always a patch of happiness in every rough time through a memory of someone we've lost. May the happy thoughts and memories sustain you and keep wearing those glitter boots, Dorothy. Ann

happywonderer.com said...

Sorry for all the sorrow in your week and beyond. Praying God will comfort you and the families that are grieving. Hugs...

Bernideen said...

Sorry for your loss but happy to hear of heaven's gain!

bettyann said...

Dear Laura.
I am sorry that you had so many sorrowful moments this past week. You always try to uplift your readers. I am sending you warm hugs and kind thoughts to such a lovely lady. Take care.

Kiki Nakita said...

Laura,

I will uplift you in prayer. Sorry you had so many losses in one week. Thank the Lord your father-in-law is okay. Take care.

~Kiki~

Lori @ Dining Delight said...

Laura,so sorry to hear of the terrible situations and losses you have suffered this week. I couldn't believe all the sadness, one after the other, as I kept reading Could it be that the "good" you seek can be found in helping "Denise", (your first comment on this post) by allowing her to express her situation and the way you've reached out to her in YOUR comment? So often I find that as bad as it seems, "it can always be worse" to be true when we look at other's misfortune.
"Denise" I've said a prayer for you and for Laura that God would send you comfort and strength to get through these difficult times.
Lori

lynn cockrell said...

Dear Laura, you did have a terrible, sad and stressful week. I am so sorry for all that you have been through lately and I hope you are feeling better. I am so sorry for the loss of so many of the good and special people in your life. I hope that your father-in-law has gotten over his accident and I pray that there will be many good days and sweet happenings for you in the future, dear friend. Wishing you a good week ahead!

Linda @ Itsy Bits And Pieces said...

I'm so very sorry for your losses, Laura...sounds like such a hard week. I understand how when you are going through sadness like this, that it can feel trivial to talk about happy things. In times like that, when I am so sad, I really have to work at counting my blessings, but it does help. Sending prayers your way for comfort and peace...xoxo

Lorrie said...

Dear Laura, I'm so sorry for all the grief that has piled onto you this week. At such times it is a struggle to get through the days. I know that God is walking alongside you during all of this and pray for his grace and strength for each moment. Hugs.

Linda said...

I'm so sorry for so many sad things and your losses. ♥
I can relate.

Love, Linda

GSGreatEscaper said...

Dear Laura, Denise, and all others reading this who might be going through hard times, please take good care of yourselves. Take a bath, read an old book where you know everything is going to end happily (Georgette Heyer or D.E. Stevenson or Jane Duncan are my go-tos - or there's that lovely Laura Ingalls woman - the Hard Winter comes to mind) drink some cocoa, or watch the sunrise if you can't sleep. I pray that things get better for you all.

Mary Steinbrink said...

Dear Laura, I'm so sorry you having such a tough time right now. It seems like these days I hear of lots of friends with big problems. My prayer list grows by the day. Please know that I am praying for you and praying for a peaceful spring for you and your family. Mary

Butterfly 8)(8 Bungalow said...

So sorry for your losses. You bring a lot of wonderful people into your life. xoxo Su

kitty@ Kitty's Kozy Kitchen said...

Oh Laura, yes, you certanly had a hard week with so many losses. However, Thank you for sharing the bright lights that these three people brought into your life. I smiled at "the stories" that Jackie's mom watched, because that's what my own mom has always called her soap operas, too. One blessing that we have is that one day we will see these sweet souls that we have lost in our lives.

Auntie Em said...

You poor soul! You and your family had a terrible week. I hope your father in law is healing and has no lasting problems from the accident. So sorry about the loss of your wonderful friends and a very special uncle.
Hope you are feeling better soon! {{{hugs}}}

Angela Boone said...

I'm sorry for your losses and many stresses lately. I will keep you in my prayers. I'm also sending some long distance hugs your way!

yuni min said...

This is beautifully written and I so can relate esp with all the events that have occurred in my life recently as well. I'm so sorry for your losses and lifting a prayer for you today. Your blog is a light and your words shine so bright! Thank you for sharing them with us. So glad to have gotten to "meet" you!