Sunday, March 4, 2012

"Who's Missing?"

....asks Five-year-old Granddaughter, as we step into the hotel elevator on our way to breakfast.
I was taken aback.

We look at each other. There are six of us. Grandmother, Daughter, Son-in-Law, and three of my grandchildren. "Nobody's missing, Jasmine."
The elevator doors whisk open and we step out into the hallway of our Resort. A huge buffet breakfast is waiting for us and we're hungry.

Another day. Palm trees sway in the gentle breezes and a strong sun warms my winter weary skin. Every morning I rise early and walk the beach. The sand is unbelievably soft and powdery underfoot and I revel in its smoothness as I make my way down to the ocean. Waves lap at the shoreline with a rhythm of their own, and I take pleasure in wading into the shallow, cool waters. Shells crunch under my bare feet, but I don't mind. Looking up, I see a V-formation of brown pelicans flying quite close to the water. Suddenly one of them dives headfirst into the ocean, no doubt to spear a poor unsuspecting fish.

Back at the hotel, the family is waiting for me. I quickly change out of my beach clothes and into a summer dress. We leave together for the breakfast feast. All six of us step into the elevator.
Little Granddaughter turns to look at me, "who's missing?"
Once again, I'm taken aback.
Once again, Daughter and I look at each other, then glance quickly around, although we know everyone is here.
Daughter bends down and looks her daughter right in the eye.
"Nobody's missing sweetie."

A strange feeling comes over me and I shiver a little.
"Could it be Alex? Katie? Lara? Stella?"
Jasmine shakes her head.
Having eliminated her playmates, I try for cousins. "Is it Simon? Ryan? Owen? Adrian?"
Light is beginning to dawn on me, but I decide to keep quiet.

Weather here in Fort Myers, Florida has been absolutely perfect. Blue skies, warm sun, and no rain at all. We were happy to leave behind our bulky winter coats, hats and boots in exchange for flimsy flip-flops and blissful bathing suits.

The children were delighted to spend each day swimming in the clear waters of the Resort pool, or making sand castles and sand mermaids on the beach. Twice during our trip, we watched a pair of young dolphins swim so close to shore we could almost touch them.

It was a nice change for me to take a vacation with my family, rather than going alone.
It was good for my family to take a break from their work and school routine. Although we'd had a mild winter this year, there seemed to be a lot of viruses going around. Everyone had been sick off and on since before Christmas. It was definitely time for a change of scenery.

All too soon our vacation was over. This was to be our last day. The children were eager to get back home to familiar surroundings. They missed their pets, toys, and friends.
We'd had a wonderful time and were ready to go home. I  think we were all  getting a little weary of restaurant food (with the exception of those sumptuous breakfasts).

The elevator seemed to be slow this morning, but we didn't mind. This was a day to take things slowly, to savour our last moments here in Florida. Finally it arrived. Doors opened with a whoosh and the children surged in - all wanting to "press the button" for the appropriate floor.

Jasmine turned to look at me.
"Who's missing?" she asks yet again.

Mother makes a decision. It's time to get to the bottom of this.
"Is it a boy or a girl?"
"A boy," she replies.

I take the plunge - "is it David?"


Cheryl said...

Hi Wendy,

I knew from the start how this post would finish. How sweet that she remembers David.
Out of the mouths of babes :)

I am so pleased that you enjoyed your holiday. Beach time sounds perfect, if only I could have walked with you for a brief moment in time.

Lovely to have you back.....

Maggie May said...

I also knew what was coming. I expect little granddaughter wanted to talk about it. Children either do or they don't. I'm intrigued to know why it was always on the elevator that she mentioned it. I wonder if David left some memory with this little granddaughter, concerning an elevator?
What a charming post and so pleased that you had a lovely time together.
Maggie X

Nuts in May

Celia said...

Who else Wendy? Glad you share memories of David. I suspect his spirit is strong and with you all. A few years ago we lost our great-grandfather right before Christmas and one went to Great-Grandma and said "I bet you really miss him, I do," and of course she did but we were all to fearful to bring it up, you should have seen her smile because he was remembered.

Grammy said...

I am virtually basking in the sun with you, through the photos. Awe the beach. I too am very happy for you. Such joy to share this adventure with you family.
Love and hugs sent your way.

Grayquill said...

Sad, sweet, touching...I hope you are doing well!! Give that little grand daughter and extra hug.

Wendy said...

I have no idea why Jasmine chose the elevator to ask who was missing. There is absolutely no memory of David being associated with an elevator.

Jasmine barely knew David, but I think both her mother (my daughter) and I have kept him alive by speaking about him from time to time.

It remains a mystery as to why Jasmine asked who was missing while we were on holiday. In her short life, she visited our home only a few times. David was too ill to visit the grandchildren in their homes, so missing his presence away from our home is strange.

I do feel his Spirit is strong and must have been with us. Perhaps since elevators "transition" between floors, Spirits also "transition" between worlds. Who knows?

Thank you for your kind comments.

mxtodis123 said...

Dear Wendy, that was so touching. Sometimes we tend to forget that children are so wise.

sarah said...

I'm pleased that you enjoyed with your family at the perfect beach.
I think he protects you and your family from Heaven and she might have felt the warm something from him.
Very sweet granddaughter!
Have fine days.

Hilary said...

Lovely and touching, Wendy. From your previous posts, I remember that David has a knack of making his presence known. It might be an idea to pay special attention while you're on an elevator for the next while. Just a thought.

Betsy from Tennessee said...

Hello There, Since I've been away from blogging for a week, I have alot of catching up to do. We had a wonderful trip to Arkansas --but it's great to visit with my blog friends. Hope things are going well with you.

Glad you all had a wonderful family vacation and that the weather was wonderful for you... YES---David was missing! Sigh!

Rose said...

Aw, so sweet of little Jasmine. I suspect David was there with you in spirit, Wendy, enjoying watching you have such a good time. How nice that your family got to go with you on this vacation--some time on the beach is a wonderful way to get away from it all and recharge one's spirits and energy.

Shammickite said...

He wasn't really missing.... he must have been there in spirit with you all.

JeanMac said...

So very touching and sweet.

Nature Rambles said...

Hello Wendy, as I read started reading your post, I had a feeling that there would be some kind of sign from David. Good to know that you and your family were away in sunny Florida. I often remember your last posts with all that ice and snow. Another post that touched my heart.

Q said...

Dear Wendy.
Jasmine sounds as if she is a sensitive.....
she might also know the Sprites and Fairies...I know this energy as "hado".
Lovely memories you are making with your grandchildren...May the Florida sunshine keep you warm as you walk towards Spring.

Mary said...

Wendy, she's an insightful little girl... Happy you are able to vacation. We all need a change of scenery.


Morning Glories in Round Rock said...

It looks as though you had a wonderful time. I hope you missed all the collegiate crowd. Like Cheryl, my first thought was "Out of the mouths of babes". I'd like to think Jasmine felt his presence. It's almost like the "I Spy" game. Something she felt rather than saw as you all gathered in the elevator together. Lovely post--much warmer than the last one of ice hockey!

ShySongbird said...

Hello Wendy :-) Thank you so much for visiting my blog! I have often visited your blogs and read right back into the archives but have never commented because I felt I might have been intruding when you were obviously going through such very difficult times...I was so very sorry for your loss and the suffering you both endured. I have lifelong respiratory problems myself so felt much empathy.

What a touching story you told here (you do write beautifully!) children are so sensitive to things we adults often don't pick up on and I'm sure it is comforting to know that in spirit there was actually... no one missing...

I shall definitely visit and comment again and will put myself on your followers now :-)

Holly said...

For reasons that can't be explained, I happened to come looking for you today and read this post. I know all of us knew your grand baby was referring to your Beloved, but the still, quiet question, "Who's missing," is so charming and powerful. What a gift to you. I'm so glad.

Nezzy said...

Outta the mouths of babes! I know you missed him too.

I'm glad ya'll got to take this trip together, family...that's what it's all about.

God bless and have yourself a delightful day my friend!!! :o)

Beverly said...

Hi, Wendy,
What a dear post. I'm so glad you had nice weather while you were in Florida. I was in Fort Myers not too long ago, visiting the Tom Edison Estate.

Grandchildren are great, aren't they.

Shammickite said...

I hope all is well, you haven't posted for quite a while.

Deborah said...

Hello Old Friend. How is life for you these days? Good I hope. Sending you all my love on the wings of a desert sparrow, Deb