The past few days have been strange indeed.
It all began Wednesday morning at about 3:50 a.m.
I was sleeping, albeit very little, but immediately heard the phone ring.
It was my grandfather.
I knew that could mean only one thing.
My grandmother had died.
She fought the brave fight for nearly a year, as cancer slowly took its toll.
She just didn't have the strength to carry on.
My grandfather called my family's home and talked to my mother, who immediately got in her vehicle to drive the quarter-mile up to my grandparents' home.
I woke up and sat in the living room with my father, contemplating what I should do.
Do I go to work? Do I call in?
I sat for nearly one hour before I decided to go to my grandparents' home to inform my mother that I had to go to work at least for a brief moment to put together a few things.
I knew the next few days would be strange.
And they were.
I had a difficult time dealing with things on Thursday.
For four hours, I was at a funeral home for the visitation.
All the while, I would step out of the funeral home to call my colleagues at work, to find out what was going on.
They, in turn, would attempt to get me to shut up and spend time with my family.
I even spent two hours at work in the morning, to the dismay of my general manager, who did everything she could to get me to go home.
Friday was even stranger.
I woke up early that morning, as the funeral was set for 10:30 a.m.
I was dressed and ready to go by 8 a.m.
But I felt like I needed some time alone, so I went for a drive.
I came back to my parents' home and waited for my sister and brother-in-law to arrive. Then we headed for the funeral home.
The service was wonderful, and yet, hard to take.
No one this close to me has ever died so it was a indeed a shock.
My grandmother was like a second mother to me.
She always felt like giving me advice, even when I didn't want it. But, she was always there for me, so I always listened to what she had to offer, even if it was strange.
After the service, the family drove back to my grandfathers' home and stayed with each other until about 2 p.m.
Then I thought, what am I going to do with the rest of the day?
I actually got in my car and started to drive to work. I thought, being at the office might clear my head.
It might help me feel a little bit better.
But I got half-way out of Spencer and just turned around.
My colleagues must have been thinking, 'Thank God he didn't call or come today.'
When I got back home Friday, all I really wanted to do was crawl into bed and go to sleep. I fought it for nearly two hours, before finally giving in.
I laid down at 4:15 p.m. and woke up at 8:30 p.m.
I must have needed the extra time away from the world.
I woke up Saturday morning and thought that I really needed to get to the office.
I was covering the Popcorn Festival Queen Pageant at 4:30 p.m., but really had nothing else to do before then.
Still, there is something comforting about work. At least, for me.
I went to the office and checked e-mail, put together things for Monday's paper and then went to cover the pageant.
Then I stayed the evening at a friends' home in Brazil.
And I began to think to myself, how wonderful it is to have family and friends that truly care about me.
I started thinking about the flower arrangement that French Funeral Home had sent to West Parish and Pedigo Funeral Home. It was addressed to me.
Thank you, by the way, for the arrangement. It was very thoughtful.
I also received another flower arrangement from my friends in Indianapolis. Friends that I went to school with. Friends that I have known for several years.
And then I thought about the friends that were gracious enough to allow me to spend time with them Saturday evening.
It was very thoughtful. All of it was very thoughtful.
And I arrived to work again Sunday thinking to myself, how blessed I truly am to have that many thoughtful people around me.