In my mind lately, I have been very busy with living in the moments of my life. I have been in the real world and not so much in the Facebook or social media world. I have so many beautiful memories in my mind and I know that these will be revisited and treasured by all of us. Life without MSH, my sweet husband, is so tough especially with these milestones.
Four short years ago, Ken and I were so excited about our last daughter getting into a very good college. She had just graduated high school with honors and was now headed to college. We were so excited also that she would only be ninety miles away from home. We could go to her recitals and school events. I’m happy to report that I made every one. I know MSH knows, too. I did pretty good holding it together until her senior recital. I cried all the way home. She was amazing and I know he would have recorded it and put it in the Abbey file on his phone. He loved to take candid pictures of us. Mainly because we hid from the camera! He loved us all so very much.
I was dreading graduation. I can’t tell you how many times we talked about fighting to stay on this side of heaven until she grew up.God blessed us with both seeing her graduate high school. This was our original prayer and we got it. We then prayed to see the college graduation. It was not to be.
I was able to get my mother to the Baccalaureate ceremony along with my sisters and brother-in-law. She told me it was not necessary for us to attend. Right? She was so happy, especially to see my mother. My mom’s memory is failing but she still remembers our girl. When we get the program Abbey is listed to perform. Remember that she said it wasn’t necessary that we come? She and her friend were outstanding. After they finished, my mind drifted back to her convocation when she first marched with her class. Ken and I watched with tears in our eyes. I was so proud of her. This last year she went through so much and persevered. There were the calls about double major woes and wanting to forget two degrees. I told her that I understood and if it was too much she could just do one degree. Then I told her what her dad would have told her. It is time to buckle down and get it done! Start what you finish, that's an Alley rule.Then the calls saying, “Mom my grades are going to stink this last semester.” She assured me that she would keep trying. The last week of school, she called and she was so excited. She had made all A’s! She also said, “Bug, I was voted by the professors as being one of the top ten students of the Class of 2023.” It’s a very high honor. It is not only grades but the professors' opinions that create the list. As I cried through Baccalaureate I felt that Ken was there in some way. My heart was bursting for the both of us. We were about to head home and my mom looked at Abbey and said,”Don't I know you? Your voice sounds familiar. “ Abbey told her that she was her girl, Abbey. Mom grabbed her and hugged her. We said our farewells and I assured her I would be back tomorrow morning for her graduation ceremony.
The next day was graduation and her brother's birthday. Ben and I were on the road by 6AM. The ceremony was at 8:30AM. It was a wonderful day. We spent the entire day together. We reminisced about her journey and remembered their Dad. We bought flowers for my containers just as I would have done for Mother’s Day when their Dad was here. He really spoiled me by giving me $200 every year to start my summer gardening off right. It has always been my summer joy to work in my flowers; he was so thoughtful. Abbey was flying out the next day for her choir trip. On the way home, I didn’t cry. I was so happy. I knew that all the love we poured into our children was eternal.We had done the work as good parents from the oldest to the youngest. Our children were adults. I thanked God all the way home for the blessings of my children, my life, and allowing me to watch on this side of heaven for the both of us. Ben proudly was there for her. He has been there for me too.God knew the plans for our lives and He did give us the best. Each other.
Time is passing away and we are experiencing the last of our firsts without him. Last July 2nd, our lives were forever changed. We’ve all had a birthday without him except me. That comes this weekend, mine. Living this past year I have had more and more random chuckles and even belly laughs remembering our lives and love for each other. The plans we made. Lamenting the ones that will never be. I want to have joy and hope for the future as we always had. I am realizing Ken would want me to push forward doing the good. I am trying every day. Students, God has plans for us. How do I know? No, I don’t have a crystal ball back row! I have Christ who lives within my soul. So do you. Follow that spiritual compass. The only eternal part of each of us is our soul. Take care of it students so we can meet on the other side.
Sarah Anderson Alley
Sal the Hopeful Gal
Quote of the Day
“For I know the plans for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future. “