Lunch in REMEMBRANCE of Tari! An egg salad sandwich, Cheetos puffs (they are full like her smile), and of course Diet Coke.
Tari & I - my last day in the Escrow Department.
Mr. Stringer, Tari & I - when I was selected as the first ever Loan Servicing Division Employee of the Year
Shannon, Joy, Tari and I - Halibut Fish Trip/Salty Dog
With the title of this post, you may be wondering and I'll answer your questions with...No, I didn't change my blog to a cooking one :) it's just egg salad ties to what's been on my mind & heart the last few days.
It always amazes me how God works. Just a few weeks ago as I talked to my Mom about upcoming Easter plans, I mentioned my love for egg salad and how I couldn't wait to have hard boiled eggs in the house. She commented that the best egg salad she & my sister had was what I prepared from memory and without taste in Rehab about two years prior.
SIDE NOTE: As part of my requirement for discharge from the hospital, I had to prove to my Occupational Therapist, I was safe in the kitchen. When asked what I wanted to make I joked I would prepare a peanut butter & jelly sandwich. She humored me and gently nudged me forward to something that was a little more difficult. I selected egg salad because it's one of my favorite sandwiches, but only if prepared by a few select people (my friend Tari). I'm picky about it. I carefully ran through the instructions in my memory and completed the supply request. When it arrived the next day, I was nervous and a little on edge. How could I make something without tasting it? What if I cut my fingers chopping the egg up? How many of these mayonnaise, mustard, sweet relish packets would I need? I boiled my eggs and after they cooled, I peeled them and began making egg salad. I even assembled a few sandwiches for my 24/7 cheering team, which they gobbled down. I did it! No injuries either. Victory!
Continued above story: As I continued talking with my Mom about egg salad, I commented that the best egg salad sandwiches I ever had were made by my former boss & friend Tari. I've know Tari since I was in elementary school. She & my Mom worked together and after my Mom moved to another servicing unit, I began in her old department with Tari. I use to beg her to bring in egg salad during spring time and she happily obliged. I think she kind of saw me like a daughter and was happy to meet my request. I often house sat for her when she'd go out of town. I really loved her like family. Time passed and after I got my Master's degree,I decided to leave my job at the bank with her and go into my studied field of counseling. I had learned so much and was ready to spread my wings. Although it was tough, she cheered me on. I still have the Orchid plant she gave me on my last day there. When I came back to the bank a year and a half later, I was in a new unit, but she was sure to welcome me back with a warm hug and kind words. A few years earlier she had beamed with pride as she helped nominate me as the First recipient of the Loan Servicing Division's Employee of the Year. I still have the notes & pictures. What treasured memories! During that phone call, I asked my Mom how Tari was and she filled me in on what Tari had recently shared with her. Although life wasn't perfect she had a beautiful daughter that she loved more than anything. My Mom mentioned that Tari needed prayer and I made it a point to send her a card telling her I loved her & to tell her I was thinking of & praying for her. Little did I know that it would be the final time I would get to 'converse' with her. I received notice from my Mom Easter night that Tari was killed Easter morning in a cabin fire. The details are still pending and I'm trying to understand as best I can. My heart aches for her daughter Lindsea. In reality I'm numb and finding it difficult to accept. Am I in a bad dream? Thoughts are whirling in my head, so much I would have said if I'd only made the choice to invite her out for coffee or stopped by to see her. I am thankful I listened when the Holy Spirit prompted me to send a card a few weeks ago. Now I just hope she got it, read it, and felt loved.
Tari, my friend, you had a heart of gold. You'd give the shirt off your back to someone in need regardless of what it would cost you. You were filled with laughter that was contagious. I was blessed to know you. It seems surreal to know you're gone. I think for awhile I'll expect to see you in passing when I go to the bank for a visit. Thank you for taking me under your wing when I started at the bank and teaching and guiding me. I will miss you! I love you! Goodbye my friend. May you Rest in Peace.