and often much too short. My dear friend Kari is now singing in Heaven. The surgery she had seemed to be successful, and she was getting a big stronger every day, but last Friday, October 15, we received the news that Kari had passed away.
It was a horrible day - Morgan went to be with Katelynn, and everyone had gathered to make plans. You could tell they were just all in shock. I just cried all day, off and on, because I don't remember a time when I didn't know Kari. She is one of those people who was just true to herself and true to God. Even though we didn't see each other all the time, she was always genuinely happy to see us when we did. She loved my kids - and would tell them that - and they all cried when they heard the news. I have many many memories of Kari - from childhood to now - and I can still hear her saying "Hi, Hollywollydoodlealltheday!" She had a nickname for everyone, and that was mine!!
I know Kari never wanted to leave her family here on earth, but I'm sure she missed her mom, her Granny K, and her sister Nikki, and today she is reunited and celebrating with them. I know she and my Daddy are having some good conversation!!!
The service was Monday. Kari's dad talked about her life - how determined she was - and told funny stories. It was definitely "her"! And while it was in some ways a joyous occasion, because Kari knew where she would be when she passed from this earth, it was heartbreaking to watch her family, friends, and coworkers have to say goodbye to her. It is definitely too soon, she was too young, and life isn't fair; but we weren't promised longevity or fair - just HOPE. And one thing Kari knew with all her heart, and wanted everyone else to know, is that as long as you know Jesus and you have been saved by Him, there is HOPE.
She would want her family to live. She would want them to live well, and make her proud. I hope you will all continue to pray for Kari's family, as the road ahead will be long and lonely without her. It is a wonderful thing to know that they have the hope of seeing her again someday.
And for the rest of us, we will always miss her....For myself, it is a lesson that life is short, and you should never put off doing those things that make memories. I learned a lot from Kari in my life, and those lessons will stay with me, inspire me, and encourage me.
Kari, you are greatly missed, my friend.