I spent a lot of time looking through old letters tonight. They brought back a flood of memories.
Letters from my mom and sisters when I went away to college in 1994, then when I went to Okinawa in 1997. (Beth & Steph, we need to have a party soon where we sit on someone’s bed, munch on snacks and crack up laughing at the letters you wrote when you were 9 and 12!)
Letters from parents of the kids I taught, thanking me for the impact I had on them. (wow)
Letters from Gabe’s Grandma Marilyn who died in 2005. We weren’t related by blood, but we were true kindred spirits. Miss her like crazy tonight.
One itty-bitty scrawled note from my Grandpa Yoder that I didn’t remember existed. I have no words for how special it is to me. Oh, I loved (love!) that man.
Two letters from my dad (who, like his dad, “never writes letters”–his own words). Praising the Lord that my parents are still living. Heart hurting for friends (Jamie! Holly!) who have lost their daddies.
Letters from Silvia (Silvs), one of my dearest friends from high school. She was an exchange student from Italy our senior year and blessed my life more than I could ever, ever convey. She died in a motorbike accident in Italy when she was 25. I’m aching tonight just thinking about her.
Treasures. These letters are treasures. And I’m having trouble wrapping my mind around what they mean to me, what these people mean to me. I feel sad. And the sad is actually tinged with some mad. Mad that they aren’t here anymore. Mad that I can’t touch them or hug them or laugh with them.
It’s not fair.
I printed out my last two blog posts (and all your sweet comments!), and I’m sending them to my grandma. Mom gave her a heads-up today that they’d be coming, so that Grandma would understand what a blog was and what the comments meant.
(And that one was from Randy Alcorn. “The real Randy Alcorn!” Mom told her. Grandma has Randy’s Heaven book that I gave her after Grandpa died and a little Heaven book that Randy signed for me and I gave to her. I’ll be re-visiting my copy of Heaven here soon, by the way.)
Mom said I can’t even imagine how thrilled Grandma was to hear that I was sharing stories about her Mama. (Note: for those of you who are new here or don’t remember, Grandma is my dad’s mom, but she and mom are just as close as mother and daughter.) She got all choked up and asked Mom if she thought her Mama could “see what Marla is doing from heaven.”
I think Mr. Alcorn would answer in the affirmative.
I’m feeling overwhelmed. And overcome. And over-, over-everything.
And yes, a little bit ticked that some of my loved ones are gone.
But so, so, so, so, so thankful for the many, many, many who are still here.
And praising the Lord for the someday reunion made possible (not in part, but in WHOLE) by the blood of my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
Thank you, Jesus.