Wendy   Grant-Hardin

Wendy Jo Grant Hardin, born July 17, 1961 to Rodney E. Grant and Vicki R. Johnson Grant, passed away Sunday, Oct. 6, 2019, following an extended illness. Wendy was preceded in death by her father, Rodney. She is survived by her daughter, Liz Al Bidary (Salah) and grandchildren Noelle and Ali Al Bidary of Boise, Idaho; her beloved Tweaks the Cairn Terrier; her mother Vicki Lindroth of Idaho Falls, Idaho; sister Debbie Gildea (Brad) of New Braunfels, Texas; brother Wade Grant of Blackfoot, Idaho; niece Casey Hansen (Calvin) and great niece Kynnleigh Hansen of Menan, Idaho; and cousins, aunts and uncles in Idaho, Washington, Montana and California. As a precocious and fiercely independent child, Wendy's childhood was a time of joyful discovery as well as deep suffering; a combination that resulted in a witty, intelligent, tough and tender woman whose complexity of character and spirit were evident until her final breath. The first-born grandchild on her father's side, Wendy led the paternal cousin brigade in a variety of adventures, from chasing each other on snowmobiles to leaping from the top of the barn into the shallow hay piled below. Youthful curiosity drove her to test her cooking skills on her siblings, resulting in discoveries such as dried split peas should be hydrated and cooked before eating, and cookies are probably better with butter and sugar. A writer of songs and mastermind of make-believe, she set the stage for vaudeville-like presentations to entertain the grandparents, developed a basement haunted house featuring characters from Dark Shadows that was the terrifying envy of neighbor children and adults. She earned her "medical" chops when a game of doctor led to everyone getting their stomach pumped, and as the Pied Piper of adventure, she promoted a candle-making escapade that blackened the walls and ceiling of the newly painted kitchen. Her heart for animals led to a host stray cat and dog adoptions throughout her life, many of which occurred when she was a child, in spite of parental disapproval. A gifted, natural artist, she was a self-taught musician, playing piano and guitar by ear. She drew and painted thought-provoking images based on personal experiences liberally spiced by her boundless imagination. Intelligent, logical and assertive, she flourished in high school drama, debate and forensics society activities where her persuasive skill and knowledge set her apart. Life-altering trauma that threatened to crush her budding spirit failed to keep her down, and instead honed her fighting edge. Wendy contracted rheumatic fever as a child, sustaining significant damage to her heart, and while the illness affected her vigor, she refused to allow it to define her. She participated in high school track, she acted and she sang, she worked as a waitress in the busiest restaurant in Blackfoot, and worked every year during potato harvest. She seized a life-changing opportunity to spend a summer as a youth conservation corps volunteer in the Idaho wilderness where she and her teenage teammates built trails, tracked and tagged wildlife (including bears) and worked with college students and adults on plans to protect the environment. As a child, she was sexually assaulted and the emotional and mental trauma would affect every facet of her life. She hid the horror deep inside, refusing to tell anyone what had happened until long after she was an adult, but the combined emotional and physical harm drove her to build protective barriers, to fabricate a new person - one who could withstand the intensity of an unforgiving and unkind world. While that tough and angry kid often raged against those she loved most, her infinite love and her ferociously protective nature were also evident every time she stood between those she loved and those who might cause them harm. Beautiful, soulful, and intelligent with hauntingly haunted blue eyes, it was no surprise that love sought Wendy. As a student at Idaho State University, she met and married Irani student Bijan Mahaloogi. Their passionate, volatile personalities clashed and they struggled to hold on through the storm, but the challenge was too great. After the marriage ended, Wendy's joyful discovery that she was with child was tragically cut short when she miscarried her baby. Wendy's grief crippled her for a year, but she reached deep, pulled herself out of the darkness and began to live again. And again, cruel fate found her. A young woman out for the night, enjoying the freedom of youth, embracing a future filled with a million possibilities: Her car rolled. She was thrown through the windshield. So pale, so quiet, so far away, with a brain injury so severe doctors worried there might not be time for her family to say goodbye. Wendy survived the car accident and the brain injury (that would nevertheless continue to plague her throughout her life), and again she dug deep. She found the courage to live, the grit to thrive. She went back to school, but this time - with a new heart, the heart of a healer - she pursued medicine. With a nursing degree in hand, she embraced her new journey, working at the state hospital in Blackfoot, where she would be able to help the kind of broken souls and broken minds that she knew so well. There, she met Clay Hardin, Navy veteran, mental health practitioner, soul mate. After they married, Wendy and Clay moved to Twin Falls to pursue their careers. In Twin, Wendy produced her most beautiful, priceless work of art: Elizabeth Ann Hardin. As an adult, Wendy was the captain of her own ship, and she delighted in the knowledge that no amount of parental disapproval could prevent her from adopting as many animals as she wanted. There were big dogs and little dogs and dogs with pups, and cats. Many cats. Two of her cats, in fact, were adopted through a somewhat creative, perhaps a tiny bit illicit, process involving a sweatshirt. Still, they were supremely loved and happy throughout their lives, regardless of the possibly nefarious acquisition. Her love of animals was second only to her love for her daughter. There were so many good days, weeks, months and years as Wendy and Clay watched their sweet, funny, bright and lively Beth grow, but a tempest was coming and the struggle would take a toll on Wendy and her little family. Throughout her life, through every trauma and every challenge, Wendy dug in her heels, refused to break, and refused to let life make her choices for her. But the damage wrought by childhood injuries and trauma slowly robbed Wendy of her simple joy, of her physical and emotional ability to nurse others, and of her sense of family and home, and instead chained her to debilitating congestive heart failure and encumbered her with a bi-polar disorder that dragged her helplessly across the emotional spectrum. In late September she was ill so she asked her brother to come get her. With that call, Wendy took back the power that debilitating illness had stolen from her. In a hospital room in Salt Lake, surrounded by the people she loved most, she repeatedly insisted she was going home. She placed her trust in her mother's love and compassion, held her daughter's hand, told her family that she loved them, and asked them to take care of Tweaks. Oct. 6, 2019, Wendy went home. Wendy's family and friends will gather to honor her life during a late-May celebration in Cascade, Idaho, where Wendy was a 1978 Youth Conservation Corps volunteer. The family will provide additional details when plans are set. Check family facebook pages for updates: https://www.facebook.com/debbie.gildea.7 https://www.facebook.com/lindyvic https://www.facebook.com/salah.albidery. Wendy 7/17/1961 - 10/6/2019Jo Grant-Hardin