Letter to My Pillars

July 5, 2015

First and foremost, thank you. I thank the BOTH of you. Even now, I am trying not to get emotional while writing this but what can I say- I miss y’all so very much. I never would’ve thought I’d be listening to someone eulogize both of your funerals in a little less than 12 months apart. I feel like I lost my pillars. I remain encouraged. You both were awesome examples to me: Devoted wives and mothers, so selfless and sweet, and patient. Quiet and meek. Now I’ve heard stories about how y’all didn’t play back in the day but the grandma’s I remember never raised a hand or a voice. I am not sure if I showed or expressed it enough, but I truly appreciate the both of you all and what all was done for me. More than you could ever imagine.

img_8144Pauline: Always catching you in the middle of an infectious laugh. I remember you as the grandma that I didn’t see a whole lot when I was younger but lived around the corner. I don’t know if children naturally gravitate towards the mother’s side of the family but that was my situation in this case. Maybe out of preference because you didn’t own a game system or computer for us to play on, a boat load of sugary drinks and snacks, or game boards; all childish things that hold no value. I learned to appreciate you more as I got older and I was old enough to come visit you on my own without accompanying my parents. I loved randomly ringing your doorbell when you weren’t even expecting me just to see that warm smile on your face. Or how I would call you just to check on you and tell you about my day because I hadn’t heard your voice in some weeks. You always made it a point to say you didn’t want to bother anyone or impose on anyone’s plans but I made it a point (in return) to show that I was not bothered by taking you to any appointments you may have had. I enjoyed being in your presence. You were my baby. I’ll never forget me coming to pick up China Dishes that were once your mother’s but you wanted me to have them because you felt I would take care of them properly. In that very same trip, you told me, “I was the rock of this family.” I was intimidated then, I get it now

img_2488Willie Mae: It all happened so fast. One minute I’m kissing you on the cheek telling you I’ll be back later in the evening, to getting a text that you were in the hospital and 24 hours later, you were gone. I am grateful that my last memory of you was pleasant. You were happy. Full of good food and surrounded by your kids, grandkids, and great-grandkids. You fought so hard after your stroke and was progressing so well. You couldn’t utter a word but I knew you were alert to your surroundings so much so you would still fuss at grandpa when he would get in his moods. The last months of your life, I watched my mother become your caregiver. It was so natural to her, so effortless. She began showing me how to care for you: put you in and out the bed, change your clothes, brush your teeth, etc. I couldn’t do it like her though. I was very much an amateur and I would look at you and say, “I’m learning. I’m getting it slowly but surely” and you would smile and nod your head. It’s weird going over to your house and you aren’t there. I still anticipate seeing you come to the door and hug me. You only came to the top of my rib cage. Grandpa misses you so much.

Both of you were my village. You helped me raise Addyson and never condemned me for having a child so young and out of wedlock. I found so much comfort in your support. Addy talks about the both of you all the time an she feels your absence. Selfishly, I wish you both were still here. I wont get rid of your number from my phone. I can’t compete with God nor will I try. I know He got y’all. Your faithfulness to His word has been rewarded. Thank you for everything. I love you.

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