The night before we went back to Hong Kong we had a farewell BBQ at my parents house to say goodbye to family and friends. Little did we know it would be our final farewell to my Grandma Foster. When my grandparents were getting ready to leave the party to go home, my grandma fell on the concrete and broke her hip. My grandpa heard the bone break and knew she was in trouble. We called for an ambulance and they got there quickly. They loaded her up in the ambulance and took her away to the hospital. Sadly, that is the last time I would ever see my dear ol' Granny Dee alive.
She underwent surgery and went to a rehab center. Her condition continuously deteriorated and about three weeks later she passed away. Unfortunately I was way far away in Hong Kong and couldn't be there in the rehab center with her as she passed. I had been texting my dad and sisters that day and got the news right after she left. I was devastated. I curled up in a ball on my bed and just bawled.
My dad told me when her funeral would be and I was determined to go. Since we had just spent a LOT of money on our trip to the US my parents and grandpa told me they understood if we couldn't come to the funeral. They knew it would cost a lot of money and they didn't want me to feel pressure to go. But there was NO WAY I was NOT gonna go!! Are you serious? This is my Granny Dee we were talking about. Of course I was gonna go... No matter the cost. First I needed to call my boss, Cannie, and tell her the situation and ask for the work days off. Since I would be needing the first week of school off, I was a tiny bit nervous about what she was going to say. I was still in tears from the whole ordeal and didn't really feel like talking to my boss, even though she is a total sweetheart! So David called her and told her the situation. She was a little worried about me missing the first week, like I suspected, but she said she would make some phone calls and call us back. About 5-10 minutes later she calls back and tells me not to worry about work and that they will be fine if I go.
During this time I had been in contact with my sister, Suzi. She had just purchased her ticket from Dallas to Utah. She was the only one I told that I was working on getting my ticket to come out there. So I search for a ticket. I was really worried that they would be super expensive since I was looking for one for the next morning! To our utter surprise, we find a very decently priced ticket leaving the following morning. Another amazing thing was it was due to land in Salt Lake City only about an hour or so before Suzi's would. Since my parents were picking her up all I needed to do was wait in the airport and I would have a ride home too!! So we quickly bought the ticket and I started packing. Since it was late at night and it is a long bus ride to the airport, we would be needing to leave our house in a few hours.
We decided that we wanted my whole family (except Suzi) to be totally surprised when I showed up. So David text my family from my phone and said something like... I'm so sorry but I won't be able to make it to the funeral because of work and such. They totally thought it was meaning both of us and they told us not to feel bad and that Grandpa understands. Little did they know that I was about to get on a plane!!
David dropped me off at the airport and I found my gate. I had a little time before my flight was scheduled to leave so I got on the internet to check Facebook. When I did I saw a post from our good friend, Betsey Hawkins. She said that she had just dropped off her husband Richard and daughter Nora at the airport. Richard's grandma had passed away and they were heading off to Utah for her funeral. When I looked up from my IPod guess who I saw standing at my gate? Richard and Nora! So I went over and asked if they were going on this flight? They said they were! I told them that my grandma had passed away too and I was going to her funeral in Utah. So there I had two good friends going on the same flight! I was so happy that I wouldn't be traveling alone. Even though we weren't sitting right by each other we could hang out during the layover and say hi during the flight. It was awesome and just what I needed right then!
I arrived in Utah in the late morning/early afternoon. Suzi and I decided that we would meet in the bathroom right by the luggage pickup area. Since I didn't know if my mom would be coming in to the airport to help Suzi with her luggage or if they would pick her up at the curb, I told Suz I would wait in the bathroom stall. I told her to come in and say the key word, Hong Kong. Then I would jump out of the stall and surprise her and my mom. So I hid in the stall waiting. Then I hear this really quiet whisper saying, Hong Kong. I knew then that my mom wasn't with her. So I come out of the stall and say hi. Then we thought of a plan to surprise my parents.... She would go out to the pick up area and wait for my parents. I would hide closer to the builder behind a large column. She would then wave at me signaling me to come over and surprise them.
So I stand behind this column and peek over while she is waiting at the pick-up area. I look around the column and see my parents car down a ways from where she is standing. My mom was standing by the car looking around. I was wondering why Suzi wasn't going over there? Then I realized that Suzi probably didn't know that they were driving a different car that they had just purchased. So I look over to my mom again and see that she is looking over in my direction. So I decided I was just going to run in myself. So I pick up my back, run past Suzi, and tell her "I'm going in". Then I run over to my mom and shout, "Can I get a ride?" She then screams, "SHELLY!!" and then grabs me in a big hug! She screamed so loud that lots of people around were just staring at us! It was so awesome! My dad then looks over at me and says... You tricky trickster! (Or something like that.) They had NO idea I was coming.
After that my parents took Suzi and I out to eat at Cafe Rio. While there we think of a plan to surprise the rest of the crew. Most of them were at my grandpa's house cleaning while my Aunt Trena and Uncle Dan were out with gramps. So we thought of a plan... I would drive over to gramps house with Shane (we went and picked him up at my parents house.) They would get to the house first and gather everyone in the living room. Shane would then drop me off at the corner and I would sneak through the yard to the back and go through the back door. I wait downstairs until they were ready.
So I get to the downstairs of the house and wait. Shane comes and gets me and says they are ready for me. So I quietly creep up the stairs and wait by the door. I then hear my dad say, one more time. Lets shoot that one more time. The rest of the group was complaining... let us go in the kitchen. We need to hurry and finish cleaning before gramps gets back. Then Suzi says just one more take. We wanna film this for Shelly. Then she says the key words... I'm glad my flight was only a couple of hours and not 20 like it would have been from Hong Kong. When she said that I ran in the room and shouted... Did someone say Hong Kong?! Everyone starts shouting... Shelly!!! They were so surprised!! It was awesome!!
Then it was time to surprise my grandpa. I hid in his bedroom. He arrived a little bit later. Once I heard him come in I popped out of the bedroom. He saw me and I went over to hug him. I don't remember exactly what he said... all I remember is that he burst into tears and held me in a big hug for a long while. He said thank you so much for coming. It was one of the best moments of my life. A moment I will never forget... I'm crying now while I'm writing about it. It meant so much to me that I was able to be there and I know it meant so much to him that I was willing to sacrifice to be there. It made me realize just how much my grandpa loves me.
The next few days were filled with some sadness but a lot of joy. We spent a lot of time reminiscing about the good times. Grandma's viewing and funeral were perfect. The funeral wasn't sad but happy. We remembered the amazing life Grandma had. There were lots of fun stories told. We heard Grandpa speak and it was amazing to hear him talk about Grandma. He truly loved her and still loves her. He is the best example of how you should treat your spouse. It was awesome. I was so glad and grateful that I was able to go to her funeral. Here is the link to her awesome obituary: