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Sarah Elizabeth
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Sarah Elizabeth [userpic]

For those of you who read, I'm really trying to make this journal friends only.  If you don't log into your account, you might miss some entries.  If you are reading and you are not a friend, please add me to continue reading.


Sarah Elizabeth [userpic]

I think it's time to get all this out on paper (or at least computer screen).  I don't think I've talked about this on here and if I did, it was brief and most likely skipped over.  I will be adding pictures to this entry soon. *****

About 7 months ago, the assisted living home my grandma was staying at lost power because of a freak ice storm.  Our immediate family discussed the options.  In the end, Grandma Phyllis went to live with her youngest son, my dad.  Dad's wife, Andrea, is an RN and works 12 shifts on the weekends.  The setup was perfect...Andrea stayed home during the week to care for Phyllis, my dad watched her on his rotating days off, and my brother and I rotated weekends.  Needless to say, at first I was really nervous.  It was a process of acceptance and letting go.  You see, it wasn't just hanging out with Grandma on the weekends.  She had Alzheimer's for about 7 years and her body was deteriorating.  She could walk baby steps with heavy assistance until around July when she quite walking all together.  We had to carry her.  Seeing her transfer before my very eyes was frightening to say the least.  She was the sharpest lady I have ever met before Alzheimer's.  A business woman to the core, she ran our family's golf course for years alone after her 3rd husband passed away.  While she may have been a very strong and feisty lady, she was always so wonderful and loving with her grandkids.  

She would have "Grandkids Night" every year before she left for Florida for the winter.  All 6 of us were there and sometimes the step grandkids went as well.  When we arrived, she was making us shirley temples to drink, in a "fancy" little glass and including a maraschino cherry.  Her dining room table, which sat 6, I believe, would be completely covered.  She'd have shrimp cocktail, assorted nuts, crackers and cheese, chips and dip, and candy.  We would eat and play games all day.  From as far back as I can remember, she'd teach the grandkids how to play blackjack.  We'd use her jewelry as bets..."I'll call with a pair of earrings and raise you a broach!"  Now it's funny to think I knew how to gamble before I could read.  I remember those times mostly for the time we'd spend drawing together.  She was an art major in college and had more natural talent than I have ever seen.  I wanted to be a fashion designer, so I would draw clothes.  She would draw life-sized faces/heads wearing crowns out of paper...we'd wear them as masks and dress up in her fur coats, fur hats, and costume jewelry.  I loved acting like we were the richest family in the world.  In a way, completely unrelated to money, I think we were.  Us kids would finally be wiped out around 10.  We'd get all tucked in our beds and just barely be falling asleep when she'd wake us up for midnight snack.  Saying we had ice cream truly wouldn't do it justice, considering there was also every topping known to man at our disposal.  The ice cream, whip cream, sprinkles, nuts, fudge, caramel....all so ooey gooey delicious.  I loved those nights with Grandma.  When I draw now, I think of her...

By the time she came to live with my parents, the Alzheimer's had taken over.  She was still in there under the jumbled words and looks of frustration, but it was like getting to know her all over again.  After my first couple of weekends there, I started feeling more comfortable and I helped out more by changing her diaper and feeding her.  She didn't make full sentences but she would laugh a lot and always be touching me.  She'd hold her babies and rock in her little rocking chair.  There were days that I would spend them all just sitting next to her, chatting.  Most people didn't think she could understand me...but it seems to me that communication can happen just as easily with tons of love and a strong family bond than with words.  I'd wash her hair and curl it.  I loved lavishing her with tons of love and attention.  I would even paint her nails on occasion.  She loved getting gussied up...or maybe she just liked the company.  

This summer, she was able to attend my wedding.  I wanted nothing more than for her to see me in my wedding dress and share that day with me.  She couldn't say a word, but I know she was happy that day.  I was happy for having her there.  Dad and Andrea took her out to the pool a few times this summer.  It's crazy how a person cannot walk without assistant, can't say full sentences, and doesn't feed herself, but once you put swimmies on her, she could doggie paddle her little butt off.  We have video of one of her days in the pool.  It's priceless.

On the 11th of this month, I got a call from my dad.  I was driving in the metro Detroit area, getting ready to go to a business meeting.  Dad's tone said it all.  She had had a couple bad days of barely eating and I think my dad just had a sixth sense about it.  I immediately headed up north to see her.  Sunday, she was a little better.  She was at least eating.  I washed her hair with a little disposable shower cap that has the shampoo and conditioner right in them with enough water to lather up and rinse out...all in one little shower cap....they are pretty cool...  I painted her nails this pink pearly color ...it's my favorite nail polish ~ super subtle, but really pretty.  On Sunday night, I headed home.  That week at work was torturous and the following Thursday and Friday, I was sick and stayed home from work.  Dad called me again on Friday night to tell me he thought her time was approaching quickly.  I wasn't ready.  My brother and I headed back to Stanton early Saturday morning to visit Grandma for the last time.  When we went in to see her, it was hard not to literally gasp.  She was in so much pain -- which was a huge change from even two weeks earlier...she just laid there in bed, looking so tired.  

Dad, Andrea, JB, and I spent most of the day really depressed.  We'd all go in to see her, give her a bit of morphine to relax her, and cry together.  I sat there and cried for hours...not ready to say goodbye to her, being selfish and wanting her to snap out of it so she could resume being my grandmother, alzheimer's or not!  Chad came up on Saturday night to say his goodbyes.  One time when we were all in there crying, my dad asked Chad to say a prayer for us...he bowed his head and said the most touching, wonderful prayer I've ever heard in my life.  My dad was sobbing and pulled Chad down to give him a hug and thank him.  That image of two grown men crying and hugging will stay with me forever.  It tore my heart out.  But I was also so proud of my husband at that moment.  It was like during that minute and a half, he became more of a man than he'd ever been.  I can't explain how much my love for him grew right then.  Chad left that night because he had to work.  We all went to bed, barely sleeping and at 6:25 in the morning, Andrea told me to hurry to Grandma's room because she thought Grandma was leaving us.

And she was.  I think she took her last breath when I was right outside her door.  Maybe she knew...or maybe God knew... that I couldn't have handled that.  The family went in her room and let loose.  I bawled until I couldn't possibly squeeze one more tear out.  Because of Thanksgiving, the visitation was Tuesday, and the Funeral was on Wednesday.  

I don't remember much of the funeral...it seemed so surreal.  

But when I walked up to the casket for the last time to say my final goodbye, I reached for her hand and immediately saw the pearly iridescence of pink nail polish.  I will miss her terribly.      

Current Mood: melancholymelancholy
Sarah Elizabeth [userpic]

I don't really have much to write about, so I guess I'll just roll with it.  I'll type what I'm thinking about and whatnot and see where it takes me.  Posts like these tend to get deleted, but what the heck...

Chaddy and I spent the weekend (mostly) together.  I had to watch my boss's dog, but still saw Chad Friday night for a business meeting and he met me in Lansing on Saturday to stay the night with me.  We met at Circuit City to buy one of our wedding presents...a digitalcamera from my mom.  She gave us some money to pick out the one we wanted.  It's not top of the line, but it's a decent one.  I plan on taking it everywhere and taking random pictures.  I'm excited for clear pics instead of pictures from my camera phone which tend to be blurry.  Be expecting tons of pics soon.

Saturday night, we went over to my in-laws.  We played cards and ate dinner.  I took Danny (boss's dog) over to Myrl and Linda's house too.  At the end of the night, I had Chad go and start up the H3 (one of my boss's vehicle he let me drive) and put Danny in it.  We went outside to leave and found that Danny had locked us out.  At 1:30 in the morning, it's really not that funny.  But Chaddy came through and got Danny to jump on the door and unlock it.  Yey.

I thought about hanging out with some friends this weekend, but I decided against it.  There are times I'll leave my phone off or away from me, on purpose.  It sounds mean.  I'm not trying to hurt feelings or anything, but sometimes I don't want to chat.  I just want to read or watch a movie or love on my husband.  I used to be shocked when people didn't have cell phones.  Now I understand the reasoning.  I love my phone on the go, but I also like quiet time for me.  Weird.

I don't know why I've been thinking about this lately, but I have.  I wonder if one of the gifts God has given me is forgiveness.  I look back at all the situations where people were shocked that I had forgiven someone ~ whether it was a boyfriend who was unfaithful or a friend who betrayed me or someone who said something to me that would normally cause someone to disown their relationship.  However, is it truly forgiveness if you can't forget?  There are things that I still think about that happened years ago.  Things I have technically forgiven, but definitely haven't forgotten.  I don't feel like a person can truly forgive if how they deal with that person is affected by what that person did to them in the past.  A friend, for instance, hurt me deeply years ago.  We have since mended that friendship and I consider them a true friend.  But at the same time, there are instances when I wonder if it will happen again.  Will they hurt me again?  And part of me holds back so they can't hurt me because I half expect it.  Not that all my walls are up and guarded, but maybe there are little fences.  I don't know.  Anyway...

Last night Chad and I decided to watch the debate for Governor of Michigan.  While Chad has never voted before, I think it is not only a person's right, but their duty as well.  How can someone complain about the government but do nothing to make their voice heard?  It's dumb.  Chad ended up registering on the last day to do so.  We watched the debate.  Overall, I was unimpressed with DeVos as a speaker, but I don't trust Granholm as far as I can throw her.  She has had four years to make a difference and what has she done?  A whole lot of talking and making promises.  I think being Governor is more about getting things done for Michigan citizens than making promises to them.  And even if I'm the minority for thinking this, I think DeVos could truly turn around our state.  I look at what he's done to Grand Rapids and I want that to spread east.  I love Detroit...which originated from my love for the Wings, but has grown steadily over the years.  I think it could be an awesome(r) city with a little TLC.  Some people think that DeVos is trying to buy his way into Governor.  I honestly don't care if he is.  If he has that money to spend, why not give him a place to invest -- like this STATE.  I know the DeVos family and I really hope he comes out on top.  Unfortunately, he has a long way to go to convince this state that he's the best candidate.  I just think Granholm is a snake.  I wanted to reach through the tv and smack her upside her smug little head.  Yikes...Sorry for the rant.

After the debate, we threw in The Lake House with Keanu Reeves and Sandra Bullock. Chad and I sat on opposite sides of the couch with our feets in the other person's lap.  I rubbed on his feet and lotioned them up, but was completely outdone!  Chad got out a whole bunch of my nail stuff and proceeded to give me an hour long pedicure (or his interpretation of one, since he's a guy :) ).  Now my toenails are a light lilac color and I look at my them and get this happy giggly feeling.  He spoils me.  

Three years ago on this day, I officially became his girlfriend.  Girlfriend to wife is a heck of a transition...but I'm truly loving it.  He's going to the doctor's office today to get his knee checked out.  Something with it is bothering him.  Please say a prayer for him.  We're hoping it gets better soon so he can look for a new job.  


Sarah Elizabeth [userpic]

Finding this list from a random journal took me waaay back.  Every single thing behind the cut is familiar to me and some of it made me laugh out loud.  For those of you who were raised in the 80's and 90's...

Current Mood: gigglygiggly
Sarah Elizabeth [userpic]

Since the accident, many of Chad and my prayers have consisted of, "Please God, show us the car we are supposed to have."  

Chad would add that he wanted a Honda...I'm not sure God is really partial to make or model, but we figured it would be best to be specific ;).  We've heard nothing but rave reviews about Hondas.  Anyway, recently we found out about a 2002 Ford Taurus with 26,000 miles on it.  It is in mint condition.  They are selling it for 6k.  Not bad.  I've looked into getting a loan for that car and everything.  We pretty much though the decision had been made.

However, last night when we were at Dunkin' Donuts, we saw this very sharp gentleman who was getting some drinks for him and his son.  Chad struck up a conversation with him and they got talking about how he runs a car dealership, so Chad told him about the car accident.  The guy asked if everyone was ok.  Chad said, "My wife and her friend walked away, unharmed.  We praise God for His hedge of protection that He places over us."  They finished up their conversation and the guy leaves.  A minute later, he walks back in with a really confused look on his face.  He asks Chad, "Excuse me, but did you just say "Praise God"?"  Chad said, "Absolutely."  

This guy looks at us both, nods his head and says, "I tell you what.  You come see me at the dealership and I will hook you up with the car you want at MY cost."

He gave us his card.

He runs a Honda dealership.  

Are you stinkin' kidding me!? hahahah  God is seriously awesome.  Chad's going to go check out the dealership today.

I love my life.  :)

We decided to go with the Taurus.  I had a really good feeling about it and the car had such low miles, it was really a steal.  We got the loan and bought it yesterday.  :)  One awesome thing about life is freedom to choose.  Certain things may be thrown in our path, but it's not always necessary to go that direction.  Have a great day, guys.

Sarah Elizabeth [userpic]

Sarah Elizabeth [userpic]

Friday night my roommate, Adam, and I were on our way home from work.  He was driving my car.  I was dozing off in the passenger seat.  I noticed we were slowing down, so I sat up and looked.  All traffic had stopped.  Just as we had stopped and 'settled', we were hit full force.  My car is totalled.  But I am not.  It's had me really taking a deeper look at things.....

The black car in the picture is the one that hit us.  That tells you how hard we were hit...she hit us, and another car and still ended up way up there....

Sarah Elizabeth [userpic]

Today is our 5 month anniversary.  I wouldn't normally notice such a random anniversary but for some reason I did...so I figured I'd post a completely vomit inducing post.

I'm the luckiest girl in the world.  

Current Mood: thankfulthankful
Sarah Elizabeth [userpic]

Through my job, I got tickets to the Buick Open, along with VIP passes into the Cingular Corporate Tent (free food/drinks/air conditioning)...Unfortunately, AT&T really disappointed everyone with their "VIP" tent, we still had an awesome time.  I took my husband, sister, best friend Adam, and in laws.  We even saw a hole in one ~ how awesome is that?  Anyway...on to the pictures!
Me and my sister, Sam

Sarah Elizabeth [userpic]

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