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Updated: Sep 10, 2023

Last week my family and I attended the viewing and funeral of my moms great Uncle, and my siblings and I great great Uncle, Uncle Bob.

I met Uncle Bob when I was 7, not long after my adoption. Him and his wife, Aunt Santa were just the sweetest couple! 

When we had gatherings at my Grandma and Poppy’s home, whether it was birthday parties, baptisms, reunions, holidays or whatever it was, they always made the effort to be there and from what I can remember they were there. 

As most of you know now, I have fifteen other siblings (WHICH IS A LOT😂) so the fact that they made the effort (and made it to most of them before they passed) meant the world to my family, especially my parents. 

I learned last weekend that Uncle Bob and Aunt Santa made a promise to my parents that they would be at special events for my siblings and I, and be there for our family and they kept true to that promise.

I remember when we would go over to Grandma and Poppy’s house for parties and gatherings, Aunt Santa and Uncle Bob were the first smiling faces we would greet. They would sit at the kitchen table, which was the room in front of the sun room which was separated by the sliding door. 

As we entered the house my siblings and I knew better than to not greet Aunt Santa and Uncle Bob first. If we didn’t they would find us and drown us in kisses and hugs 😊❤️

Aunt Santa was Italian so hugs and kisses were her favorite, and Uncle Bobs too.

I can remember this as though it was yesterday: She would be sitting in the kitchen chair which was at the head of the table. She was always in a blouse with her hair nicely done, and the thing that would always catch my attention about her is her BRIGHT red lipstick😊 It was her signature to me. Sometimes she’d leave a lipstick print on you and other times you were lucky to escape it😀

Uncle Bob was not a whit behind her, always in his polo golfing shirt and either some light denim jeans or khaki shorts😀 They were a sight of joy!

When they’d come for my birthday, they’d always get me the cutest clothes from justice kids, and that right there sealed the deal for me haha😀

I’m just kidding. Their presence was always great to be around. They would sit outside with their glasses on and watch us as we went swimming and had fun in the sun! They were basically another set of grandparents to my siblings and I. 

After my family moved it became harder to see them. We were still in the same state, but they were also getting older and not as mobel. 

Aunt Santa was first to start getting sick. We might have seen her maybe twice after that.

I remember one night I felt impressed to write Aunt Santa a letter. She was pretty sick at that point but I didn’t know to the extent. I was probably in my early mid teens. 

I don’t remember everything I said, but I do remember telling her I hope she feels better, and that we were praying for her and how much I loved her. I remember sharing a memory I had with her and how sweet it was that she was always in her chair, with her red lipstick ready to greet us every time we had gatherings, that was all I remember writing.

To my surprise she passed away shortly after she got my letter😓 (little did I know she was that sick). It was very hard for me at her viewing and funeral. Every memory I had with her came flooding back full force. I tried to stay calm and cool but I struggled with it. Sometime during the viewing or funeral,  Amanda, her granddaughter came up to me and told me that Aunt Santa got my letter before she passed. She told me how sweet that was of me and a few other things I can’t remember. I told her I wasn’t going to but that I think God really wanted me too. 

You just never know what may happen when you follow prompts from God. 

Uncle Bob's viewing and funeral was different for me than Aunt Santa. I didn't cry or anything like that. I was calm and kept to myself. It was a silent mourning for me. 

I found this picture in the hallway of Uncle Bob's viewing and I really liked it. Besides the fact that I love literature and all things associated with it, I also liked the depth it coved in the end paragraph:

When tomorrow starts without me, 

don’t think we’re far apart, 

For every time you think of me,

I’m right here in your heart”

I love thi part because I believe when someone we love passes from this mortal abode

“they’re never really gone” 

In my church:

The church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saint, we believe in life after death. We believe that once a person has passed from this life that they live on. 

That we have the opportunity to see them again. 

That they are just waiting for us on the other side.

This knowledge has given me so much peace in times of chaos, and comfort in times of sorrow.

God loves us too much to let life simply be swept from us at the grave. He has given us Salvation and even Exaltation with our families forever!

Even though it was hard to know I’ll never see them in this life, it is a joy to understand that I’ll see them again.

Don't ever hold back loving because loosing is even harder.

To all those who have truly loved and lost, God is always aware of all your pain and sorrows. God loves you and will comfort you. You WILL see those loved ones again, that is a promise from Him. Have FAITH and always BELIEVE!

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