I'm not going to sleep well tonight, so I thought I might as well blog. The crickets have been chirping loudly over here and I've just let them sing on and on. Unfortunately, I'm breaking the silence with a downer of a post tonight.
This wasteland of a blog started spiraling downhill last year when one tragedy after another happened to a bunch of dear friends of ours. These painful anniversaries are starting to come around in the next few weeks and it just sucks. Though the loss of Ben, Brandon, Cody, and Brian is not a strong presence in my everyday life (Camille is still much more so), the anniversaries of their deaths (or loss in Camille's case) bring everything back. I hate knowing that my friend's hearts will be aching more than usual for the next little while as they remember those awful, painful moments. I have not been looking forward to these next 6 weeks.
And then, we got a phone call today from Paul's mom letting us know that her cousin, Scott Burnett died today in a construction accident. Now, I couldn't tell you the name of ANY of my own mother's cousins, but I know pretty much ALL of Rhyll's cousins and love them ALL (and their parents and their spouses, and kids and grandkids, and in-laws, etc)! Every year, the Burnett-Oler family holds a great reunion that oddly enough, we all want to come to. It's usually up in Montana, so we don't make it every year, but we've never missed two in a row. The Burnetts are a tightly bonded family that invest in each other. We get together often enough that when a newcomer joins the clan, it's worthwhile to bother to learn their name and get to know them, since you'll probably get to see them again next year! It's truly unusual and an incredible blessing to be a part of it all.
This year, Paul and I made a last minute decision to actually go to the reunion in Gallatin Gateway, Montana. None of the siblings were going, so we were wishy-washy about the long drive up there, but ultimately figured... "let's just go," so we did. I don't have a close relationship with Scott, but I saw him, gave him a hug and had a quick conversation with him 10 days ago. I have nothing but love for Scott's parents, Clint & Bonnie, his sweet and fun wife, Colleen, his kids, his siblings. I'm just (AGAIN) aching for the loss THEY are feeling. I hate how unpredictable life can be and how quickly it can be turned upside down in such a painful way.
I had a brief moment of fear that the rest of this summer would be like last summer and I wanted to shout out to the world, "hide yer kids, hide yer wife, and hide yer husbands too..." Please keep your loved ones close and safe. Please speak kind words of love. Please strengthen your families and your relationship with God. These are my goals for now. I need to make sure to utilize these reminders of how short and precious life is, so the Lord won't need to teach me these things in any other way.
Sorry for the emotional post. I'm headed to the Stampin' Up! convention (aka returning to the mother ship) in Salt Lake City this week, so hopefully will take the time to brighten up this place in the near future. In the meantime... (((((((((((((((((((hugs)))))))))))))))))))). If you read my blog, chances are, you're someone I care about a lot... and I want you to know that.