Children, Parents, and Grandparents

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I’m sitting here in my parent’s living room listening to stories of ancestors. It is interesting to hear about the changes of names after they came to the United States. Some family names have undergone so many changes it is a wonder we can find our great grandparents.

I love hearing stories of my grandparents and great grandparents. One grandfather was known as a runner. Dad remembers his grandfather in his 80s running races with the young men of the town. Running backward his grandfather was able to run faster.

Other grandparents came to the United States from England, and were enticed to return for a short period. He and his wife determined to return to the United States, bringing with them her parents and sisters. The grandmother died in childbirth and the child died soon after.

One grandfather emigrated from England to Plymouth, Massachusetts ten years after the Mayflower. One time he helped to save the colony from the Indians. Our families came from England, Scotland, Germany, across Europe. It is quite a heritage, one I am grateful to know a little bit about.

Eve looked at family from the opposite perspective. Everyone was (and is) her child or grandchild. She listened to their stories. She felt their joys and their sorrows. She must have been hurt when many of her children chose not to listen to her teachings. It must have been painful when more children chose to follow the destroyer than who chose to follow God’s laws.

I know the joy of childbirth and children. I could feel her love each child and her great sorrow as many chose not to listen and obey the covenants and laws she and Adam had agreed to obey. She waited many years for a child to obey the covenant laws. Abel was obedient, and his brother Cain murdered him. Can you imagine Eve’s grief? Her sorrow? She was not a young woman by then and they still needed a young man to carry on the heritage of the Priesthood. It was years later when that son, Seth, was born.

Have you lost children to faiths other than yours? It is painful, especially when your beliefs are strong. Can you imagine Eve’s sorrow? I can. Her love of family permeated my soul as I wrote her story, Eve Remembers. Read an excerpt:

Abel never returned. The next morning, Jed came running from Cain’s fields. He had gone looking for Abel. The front of Jed’s robe was soaked with his tears.

“Mama! Papa! Cain is not in his fields—but Abel is! He is not moving, his head is all bloody, and he will not answer when I speak to him. Papa, come with me! Please!” he cried, tugging on Adam’s sleeve.

Adam and I followed him to Cain’s fields. They were past ours, so we had to run a distance, panting when we arrived. There he lay, our beautiful, obedient, loving son. His head had been smashed by a rock. There was no breath in him. He was dead. I fell to my knees, sobbing, calling his name.

“Abel, oh Abel! What has happened to you? Who did this to you? Oh, Abel! Why did you come here to find Cain? Oh, Abel!” I cried.

Adam knelt beside me, and held me close, whispering in my ear, “Eve, Eve. He is gone and his brother did this. The Lord warned me something would happen. Abel, our only obedient son. Oh, Eve.” He, too, began to sob. Jed knelt behind us, wrapping his arms around us from the side, tears falling onto our necks. We sobbed a long time, heartbroken.

I hope I never have to lose a child in that manner. I hope you don’t, either.

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