Previous month:
February 2016

March 2016

Grand Cayman and other things...

Hi, Mom!

Well, so much has happened... and oh how I wish we were talking every day (for real talking, not just me talking to the air and hoping you are there in some form or another). Each day there are little things and big things and as always, I crave hearing your voice to tell you my stories. 

We just got back from vacation; 10 beautiful days in Grand Cayman. And as wonderful as it was (and it was -- Dad is amazing and so generous and we had lots of fun) it just wasn't the same. I saw you with every turn and every crash of the waves. Beach Bubbles made me think of you. Sarah and I took a long (2 hour!!) walk on 7 Mile Beach one morning and I saw your footsteps all along the way and heard your voice pronouncing the different condos and hotels. You were there. I felt it. 

You would have been both amazed and probably horrified with some of our activities... Sarah and I got certified to SCUBA dive -- can you believe it?? Sitting on the beach was too hard for me this time, and definitely for Dad, so we kept moving. We rode horses on the beach. We went on a nighttime boat ride to see the bioluminescence (we even went swimming with it -- totally crazy, by the way -- and all the little jellyfish that supposedly lived on the bottom of the bay. We drove around the island. To Rum Point. To Pappagallo's. Just all over. The house we rented was a terrible mess most of the time -- sand everywhere. Beds not made. Stuff all over the place. You must have been groaning if you were watching. But I know you were cutting us some slack, as you must know how hard it all is for us. 

The girls turned 13 this weekend. Can you believe it? Teenagers!! We took them to dinner at The Wharf and had such a great time. Sarah took tons of pictures, we gave them gift cards and cash (which thrilled them both), and Dad arranged for sparklers to be served with dessert. So cool.  They are getting so big... and yes, I know it has only been three months, but I swear I see them getting older with every day that passes. So smart and sweet and funny. 

Side note: writing these letters makes me feel like my head is going to explode. Just a little explosion maybe. But I JUST CAN'T STAND THIS.  I can't stand not having you here. 

Anyway, found out today that I got the dean job... were you there with me? I felt like it. Felt stronger somehow. It feels good, but bittersweet. I wanted to see this day with you and to celebrate with you. I know how proud you were of me, and I hope you know how much I owe you for letting me follow my dreams. Everything in my life is sweeter thanks to you and to Dad. 

I am about to send a note negotiating the salary -- so uncomfortable for me, but Dad and Todd are encouraging me. I'm trying to do what I can to support my family and make all the hours at work worth it somehow. I know money doesn't make up for time lost, and hope to use anything we have as a vehicle to making things happier and easier. Lourdes for the girls. Amex back to Dad. Vacations to relax and see you in the turquoise waves. Dream of the days when when were together in person. 

So, here I am. Writing to you when I should probably be sleeping. Hoping somehow the message gets through. 

I think I have to sign off for tonight. My heart is just aching and the tears are falling and I don't think I can take more right now. 

I love you. 




Dear Mom,

So there is a large part of me that thinks you would be having a little nervous fit right now! The four of us just finished the closed water diving training, and have only the four open water dives left before we are all certified SCUBA divers! Can you believe it? I bet you can't!! Ainsley is just a natural. A little fish. We keep joking that she has gills underneath her wet suit. Sarah was nervous to start, but I think she was kind of picking up on Todd's anxiety. Once the instructor worked with her, she was just amazing. Todd hates clearing his mask and isn't sure he loves it, and I'm just hanging out hoping my ears will equalize! :) But Dad seems excited that we are doing it, and that he will have some dive buddies. And that makes me really happy. 

Only 10 more days until Cayman. Packing has begun, preparations in full swing. Feels a little hollow without you, and I fear I'll just spend all the time crying, but then again, I feel like crying all the time now so what's the difference! Eh? I know you would be so upset that we are so upset, but what can we do? Dad says we are honoring your memory by doing things  you loved and that we loved doing together, so on we go. Sarah said she would go to the orchid show with me -- that will be fun. Not the same though. 

In other news, made it through my interview. Fingers crossed, I think it all went well. Other candidate is coming in this week, so we shall see. I gave it my best shot, so no regrets there. Thom said I might hear the results before spring break. If it is good news, I hope I do! If not, when I return home will be soon enough! Ha! No sense being upset about that too. 

Dad is doing well, I think. House is too quiet, but I feel that way too. We spent all weekend there, and it was fun. Filled the house with mess and noise. All good things, I think. Watched a movie, had take-out food. Good stuff. I even tried to make the beds before we left, so it wasn't a total disaster. I bet I left a glass or two behind though, as per usual. Don't want to try to change too much... :)

Well, it's almost midnight, and I should get to bed. I think about you all the time. Sarah and I both dreamed of you this weekend... me on Friday and her on Saturday. We were talking, you told me you were OK. I wanted to know what heaven was like and you said it was kind of like here only easier. You kept having to leave, because you told me you were doing things with Sarah. You had a few necklaces in your hand -- a gold one and one with small pearls. Said you were cleaning them for her. Then you got on an elevator and were gone for a while. Came back to see me again before I woke up. Then the next night, Sarah dreamed you brought her some necklaces and that you hugged her. Perhaps it wasn't just a dream?? I certainly want to believe so. 

All right. Time for bed. Miss you more than you can imagine. Love you forever.