"Begin today and write in it your goings and comings, your deepest thoughts, your achievements and your failures, your associations and your triumphs, your impressions and your testimonies. I promise you that if you will keep your journals and records, they will indeed be a source of great inspiration to you, each other, your children, your grand-children and others throughout the generations. Remember, the Savior chastised those who failed to record important events." --President Spencer W. Kimball

November 23, 2009

A Tribute to Kalolaine Katea

Tea is such a wonderful woman. She is the youngest daughter of Gramma Sa'ane, and Ova's "Aunt Mom." She raised him from the time he was a baby, and really I owe a lot of thanks to her for raising such a handsome, family-oriented, loving, wonderful man. Tea is the kind of person that is always giving of what she has, and she doesn't blink an eye at doing it. She's got a heart of gold and will do anything for anyone. The reason I wanted to do a tribute to her on my blog today is because she recently taught me a very valuable lesson... before I get into the lesson learned, I want to explain a little more about this wonderful woman. She is Ma's caretaker, and has pretty much taken that on as her life's purpose. Ma lost her husband, Grandpa Timote almost 30 years ago, and Tea has been by her side every day since then. It's funny because I knew Ova's family before we ever started dating, and Ma and Tea loved me from the beginning, I could feel their love. When I got home from my mission, I had heard that Ova was interested, but it was actually Tea that asked me for my number for her son (cause he was too shy...or whatever...lol) Ova and I started dating, and things progressed pretty quickly and I remember when Ova went and told her and Ma that we had decided to get married, she was so happy. Before Ova and I got married, he had the conversation with me that it was his responsibility to take care of them since they had taken care of him his whole life, just giving me the heads up that they were our responsibility.... Ova and I lived alone together for only 1 year, and after that, Ma and Tea moved in with us and we've been one big happy family since then! It's so true that you really get to know people and how they really are when you live with them.... I've gotten to know both Ma and Tea very very well, and I love them both so much just as if they were my own Mom and Grandma. Of course, we've had our differences, but we always seem to be able to work them out. Tea completely adores my boys, and she does anything and everything for them. They are spoiled rotten little brats because of her. They love their Gramma Tea so much!

Tea is the kind of person that always puts others before herself and finds joy and happiness in doing that. Tea is very smart and has, for several years, been making payments on Ma's funeral services to help aliviate the stress when the actual day does come. She bought burial lots, the casket, the vault, and even paid for the funeral services. Everything was paid for, except she still owed like $600 on the vault. Ova and I talk about it all the time, how grateful we are for Tea for being prepared and thinking of doing this before it happens so the family doesn't have to stress out. Well, as you know from my other posts, Ma has had quite a few scares in the past couple months, going in and out of the hospital and with the way she is talking about how she's ready to leave. Knowing that she's all set if that day were to come is very comforting.

Well, there is a family in our ward who tragically lost their mother a couple weeks ago. It was a very sad situation, especially because the mother was in good health and her death came very unexpectedly. We heard about her passing and our thoughts and prayers were with the family for comfort. A couple in the ward came over to visit with Ma and Tea, and they were talking about how the family is stressing out because they didn't have any preparations made for their mother's passing, and they didn't have the money to get everything they needed. The couple that was visiting continued to talk about what happened and how tragic it was for the mom to pass so suddenly. Tea got up and called Ova from the room. I had no idea what was going on, but Ova came and told me that he was running with Tea somewhere and that he would be right back. I didn't think anything of it, I just continued watching t.v. with my boys and Tea and Ova left. They came back a few hours later and I could tell they had been crying. I asked Ova what was going on, and he told me that they had just come back from the family's house.... Tea went and gave them the burial lot, the casket, the vault, and the services that she had been paying for for Ma. I can't even imagine how the family must have felt to receive such a blessing, especially when they had no idea how they were going to be able to come up with what they needed to give a nice funeral service and a nice resting spot for their mom. Ova told me that they couldn't stop crying and they kept calling her an angel, and an answer to their prayers. I still get teary eyed when I think about this huge act of service and kindness, and I feel guilty for the way I acted when Ova first told me. I didn't look at it from the point of view of the family, or of Tea being giving, I looked at it like "what the heck did she do that for? Ma is getting old, now what are we going to do when Ma passes" I was very selfish and obviously needed to learn a lesson from this. Ova was disgusted with my response, and he totally put me in my place (which I totally needed) and then I was able to realize the true love of Christ, and charity, and willingness to give of herself Tea had. In the 6 years they've lived with us, I've always seen this from Tea, she gives food to anyone who's hungry, she gives her clothes away, she gives her coupon stuff to anyone and everyone....and she never complains about it. If she only had $5 in her pocket to last her a week, she would give it away without ever thinking about it, that's just the kind of person she is. I have learned a lot from this wonderful woman and I'd like to think that I am a better person because of her. Thank you so much Tea for teaching me how to be more like Christ. I love you!

5 comments:

Siu said...

Awww.. I think this is my favorite post!! :) What a great example Tea is!!

IONGI FAMILY said...

Wow Tea u are awesome!! great lesson learned great post Monica!!!

Gleaves Family said...

Thank you Tea for your wonderful example and for always being there for my sister and my nephews! :)

foouryan said...

Monica what a beautiful post! I cried the whole time reading because I very much know how Katea is! She is everything and more that you described on your post! I admire her greatly! I've always told my Mom how I've felt about how Katea is such an angel and there isn't a man alive except for the prophet that is worthy to have such a woman like Katea!

When my family first moved here and my Dad introduced us to his close families I was always fond of Ova and what a gentleman he is! And when I met Katea I immediately knew where Ova got his kind mannerisms from, his Mom Katea. Til this day I still have great admiration for Katea. She is truly one of the few great women on this earth! I love her to pieces! Thank you Monica for the beautiful post! Love you tons girl!

Marie said...

What a beautiful post! I have many times witnesses her Christ-like love...one time in particular I came over, you were at work, and Ova was gone...only Tea and the boys and Ma were there...Tea had just finished taking out some puteni from the oven...it was still HOT, but she didn't care...she cut it and wrapped it in foil... a huge piece (almost half of the whole thing) and handed it to me and said, "Ma wanted me to make her some Puteni, but it's cold outside so take this it will warm you up." You're so right Mon, she has a big heart, and I have been blessed by knowing her...

Thank you Tea...you are a wonderful example and love you like family.