We took Eric and Lily to Disneyland for their 4th birthdays. So we wanted to take Gamma for his. We booked hotels and paid for flights. I love Disneyland. I counted down the days until it was the day we would go. We were to leave the day after Gamma's birthday. I planned a small family gathering on his actual birthday. Our bags were packed. I thought we were all ready. I thought it would be the best week ever.
Then we woke up the morning of my Gamma's fourth birthday. I had many missed called and text messages. My husband's father had passed away. That day. On my third baby's fourth birthday.
Husband and I were devastated. We both cried. We could hear the three older kids playing and laughing in the playroom down the hall. He said he didn't want to ruin Gamma's birthday. He didn't want them to know yet. He decided we'd tell them after Disneyland. My father-in-law would have wanted them to have a fun trip.
So I put on my best happy mom face. I made a silly minecraft cake. I got happy balloons for my boy. We sang him happy birthday. We gave him presents. He had a fun day. We cried again after all the kids were in bed.
We put our sorrow on hold. We got up at 3 a.m. the next day. We went to Disney land. We smiled and ate junk food. We saw shows. We had fun.
Then we flew from California to Ohio to attend the funeral. During our layover in the crappy Denver airport we told the kids. They cried. We held them and comforted them as best as we could.
We attended the funeral. The service was really nice. He had been sick for a few years so this wasn't completely unexpected. We saw our Ohio family. We came home the next day. We will all miss him for the rest of our lives.
That was a week ago and I am still exhausted. I can honestly say this was the worse trip to Disneyland, I've ever taken. I think the kids still had a great time. I took 100 happy pictures. I hope that this does not ruin Gamma's special day for the rest of his life.
Every life is important. Every death is a loss. With each loss we learn more. Never take for granted annoying calls from your father-in-law. He might not be around to call you for long.