High School for me was not just a place I went to every day. It was my life. I lived at school 7 days a week. What started as a way of dealing with "Liz" (quotes, as I no longer like to be called that) during a particularly difficult part of my life became something I valued tremendously.
Oddly, though, my one time really good feelings got slightly tainted at some point. My school closed, and has since become a Foundation. They needed people to work for them, and I thought it would be awesome to give back in a way, for all I got while a student.
There was a problem, though. I was no longer in "the religion." In order to be considered, it seemed I still needed to be a part of the religion the school had been founded on.
It did not seem to matter that my heart was in the right place, or that I was a good person. It only seemed to matter that I was no longer a part of the "club."
I suppose they can do whatever they want to, but I still came away with an icky feeling.
There are times I am not sure that place was all that my mind made it out to be. I have questioned it more than once - before and after the above incident.
I guess because it was such a big part of a key part of my life I will never "shake" it. Not that I am trying to, though.
The picture above is me on my 8th grade graduation day. It was the end of my first year at that school. The next picture is of my grandparents. It is one of the only pictures I have of them.
As a child I never saw the unhappiness of my grandmother. As an adult, all I see is her unhappiness in her pictures. Interesting how perspective can shift.
I loved my grandparents. They did so much for me - things they never HAD to do. And I know they loved me back. Sadly, my grandmother died only a few years after this was taken, and my grandfather only a few years after that.
I don't know that I have felt the feeling of unconditional, steady love since then. Thinking about this...it is a whopper of a realization.
The sadder thing is I may not have realized just what I had and lost back then. But then again, we rarely ever do realize what we have until it is gone.
Hopefully they know how much I loved and appreciated them. The aunt who died a couple years ago believes that my grandmother taking care of me and my sister is what kept her alive. So I can only hope that means she felt the love, even as things were miserable and tough.
I had also been told that when my grandmother was in the hospital the last time she kept asking, "When is Liz coming home?" She was waiting for me to come home for Spring Break.
My aunt took me to see her, and spent most of the visit in the bathroom, crying. She knew something I didn't. She knew that many people live long enough to see someone, only to pass away a short time later.
My grandmother died within a day or two of my visit.
I wish I had known that would be the last time I would see her. No one said anything about how bad she was. She had been in and out of the hospitals many times. How was I to know this time was different?
"Funny" the things that stick with you. Not sure what to do with this stuff. I have thought about it many times, but this time is different. Tears are streaming down my face.
I certainly did not expect this.
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