I felt so helpless when I learned that my grandmother died four days ago. I thought that being sick so far from home is the worst part of living abroad, but I was wrong.
One of the blessings I have realized living so far away at this difficult time is how all of the other people who live so far from home come together to support one another. I didn't tell hardly anyone about what happened. And without me asking, people in Thailand, Nepal, Afghanistan and India have offered Masses and prayers for my grandmother and my family.
Yesterday, Fr Thomas gathered the four of us in the office for Mass before lunch. We played the Saint Louis Jesuits and I talked about her and we all offered prayers for her and my family. It was very special. All of this, with me never asking for anything. Everyone who I have met abroad has some similar story about being stuck so far away from home and everyone mobilized for me. It is incredible.
And last night I got to Skype into her funeral. I was there, tears streaming down my face, on the iPad listening to Fr Doll and my family at the Mass. Saadia made a good point. She said, "I know it's hard to be so far away, but imaging if this was 10 years ago. You get to call them and see their faces and see the funeral and be there in a way." And she is right. Now is the time to count my blessings.
I just wish that you all could have met my grandmother. As I told Fr Doll in an email, she is where my mother, sister and I get our chutzpah from. She is the example of womanpower that the next generation in our family has seen as an example.