I’m Sick and Tired, but that’s OK!

I CAN’T believe I am sick. It’s the middle of the night and my throat is too scratchy to sleep.

I don’t remember the last time I was sick. In California, the smog is bad, but you can have windows open. In Canada, the air seems better where I was but because it’s winter, you have to close everything up tight. Canadian windows are always some double-pane bullet-proof glass too (lol) so once you are in, you basically suffocate…BUT! You are at least warm then, right?

Most of my family and friends had some illness over the holidays. One of my young nephews was coughing and while he ‘sometimes’ remembers to cover his mouth, it’s unrealistic to think it will be every time and the closed up home just locks in the bugs anyways.

I’m sitting here though reminiscing about a visit with my Father’s brother and another with his sister. (I uploaded the pics today to a Family album under My Photos) My aunt Shirley is my Dad’s youngest sister and she is a Stever in every sense of the word. Crazy, super funny, silly…I just adore her. When I came over to her place, it hadn’t been since my Mom died that I saw her back in 2001. She said, "I have some bug in my throat, so don’t come close." I grabbed her anyways and hugged her tight. As sick as I feel right now, I am thankful for our visit together. She shared so many amazing stories about my Dad and I fought back tears all night. My Dad died in a plane crash when I was a little girl and Shirley’s husband, my Uncle Fred helped him build planes so I was thrilled to hear all about the good times they had too. I’m sure if you had lost someone long ago and you met up with people who could give you extra info on them, you’d know what I mean. Visiting my Dad’s brother Erv was really great too because he’s the only brother left and I curled up beside his chair like a little girl while he shared stories from when he and my dad hung out. He opened his bible and read to me and even though I don’t like when people read like that to me, he was humbled in his life even though he was a fountain of knowledge overall. I almost didn’t care what he was saying. His voice sounded like my Daddy and I was carried away into a million thoughts.

I guess this cold was just the price of admission for some of these visits and memories. It’s like the mud on your shoes after you make it home from a broken-down car. You feel like the journey was a bit tough on ya, left some dirt on you but once you arrive, you are so thankful you made it and perhaps there were some cool moments that you could pocket in your diary. Ever woke up extra early to go meet someone or stayed awake to watch over someone? It’s a small price to pay. We should never view it as a nuisance although you may have to catch up after the fact.

I think most life experiences that are worthwhile are like that. I caught a cold but I had a great time with them. I feel lousy right now and can’t sleep but I have these awesome photos. Shirley is starting to look like my Gramma Stever a lot, so I’ve been thinking about her too. My cousin Mark in the pictures brought us all together again and I am ever so grateful to him. I haven’t had any personal riffs, but some people in the generations have. He’s shown me that you can just fly on past them all and be a family despite it.

I think I understand now why all the older people in my family love looking at photos so much. I’ve always loved them, but I’m just viewing them differently tonight. Maybe when you are too sick or too old you are more alone with photos…I dunno. I bet a single photo for a lonely soldier can go a long way, huh?

So ya, the cold sucks, memories ROCK, though!

Hope you are recovering from whatever the holidays did to you…
Karen :)

"In every conceivable manner, the family is link to our past, bridge to our future." ~Alex Haley

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