November 30, 2009

Thanksgiving chaos

We have returned from our Thanksgiving travels, and the last week and a half seems a blur.

The week before our trip to CA was spent preparing to speak at the interfaith devotional at the tabernacle. The night came and went and I delivered my short little bit when my turn came, but I was so nervous with my knees shaking and mouth dry as I looked out over the crowd, that I had no clue what I had said. At some point I recall thinking, only the other speakers can see behind the podium that your legs are shaking, just don't let your voice shake. Afterward, people came and said their thank-you's and said what a nice job was done, but I felt quite certain that they were saying that just to calm my embarrassment at having shaken so in front of a crowd. I noted when the program began, though, that they said it would be on TV and the radio, so I thought it shouldn't be too hard to find it on-line and see how bad it actually was.

Our internet was out for the next day and then we were off to CA, so I didn't get to watch it until today. I flubbed the end a little, but by golly, my voice didn't shake and I said most of what I had intended to say. I didn't look quite as friendly as I would like, but I think when I'm nervous I never do. Kind of like when you meet a shy person and they seem a little snobby, but they're actually just too shy to manage a smile. Yeah, that's me.

The next afternoon we were off to CA. We decided to bring Hannah Jane's rabbit, Lucky so that she could ave some extra snuggle time during our trip. And Grandma was excited to see Lucky again. She came with us when we bought Lucky and hadn't seen her since. I was nervous about Lucky's ability to handle the long drive, but she was to come with us on the plane to TN next month, so I figured she's just have to get used to travel.

We arrived. The kids did so well on the drive, in the hotel, and on the next day's drive. Everyone kept high spirits the whole way. Then we were at Gramma Jamma's house. The first full day we were there, Joe's brother and his family came over for Thanksgiving. Hannah Jane and her cousin spent the day chasing each other around and giggling. They played with Lucky so much, while Uncle Jim teased them about eating rabbit for Thanksgiving.

When the day was done, we walked extended family out to the car and gave hugs and good-byes. Hannah Jane beat us to the house and immediately came out to tell Joe that aunt Jeanie wanted to see him right away, alone. Joe yelled for hiss mom to bring a stethoscope. It was Lucky. While we were out saying goodbyes, somehow Partner, the dog, had been let out f his crate, the bedroom door had been left open, and he had opened Lucky's cage himself and snapped her little neck. She looked unharmed, as if she should hop away at any moment, but she never moved again. I told Hannah Jane and asked hr if she wanted to say good-bye. She came in and held Lucky and cried for what seemed like forever. We were all gathered around crying and stroking Lucky's coat. When finally she let go, Joe dug a hole and helped Hannah Jane bury him. the next day we visited and put flowers on her grave.

We recovered superficially and went about our usual visit, but we were all so overwhelmed with sadness and guilt over the circumstances of Lucky's death that the rest of he visit was kind of a fog. We wondered what we could ave one differently, how all of the wrong door had gotten open, how the dogcould ave gotten in her cage. It was just awful! When it was time to leave, Hannah Jane burst into fresh grief at the thought of going home without a member of our family. Half the drive home she would tear up and call out Lucky's name. I cried too, partly because I loved that dear rabbit very much myself, and part;y because it is so agonizing to see your child overcome with grief.

We arrived home today, and Hannah Jane once again lost herself to tears upon getting out of the car and seeing all of Lucky's supplies there. It will be a long time before her little hearth heals. If she gets another rabbit, which she want to do come spring time, I have a feeling she'll always be hesitant to bring it along on trips. Who could blame her? Although, with our little mini farm in full swing, we'll be traveling much less in the years to come anyway.

So now we set to work unpacking and ordering our home with all of the children's new Christmas gifts from Gramma Jamma. We must pack up and head out again in two weeks for a 3 week visit to the south. Hopefully Hannah Jane will have recovered enough by then to enjoy herself a bit more.


  1. Anonymous1.12.09

    I am so sorry about the rabbit. Give HJ a hug for me. Call me if you have time to get together while you are here. We would all love to see you. B

  2. Hmm...well, B, I have no clue who you are, so if you really ant to get together, you'll have to be more specific :) I know I'm going to feel like a fool when I realize who you are! Anyway, I need a little help on this one!

  3. Oh!!!! Brandi? Duh! Yeah, PM me your number and I'll give you a call!


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