leave a mark…

I wanted to write something about how I am feeling today…One year ago my mother in law went to be with Jesus. It was one of those 6 months or less journey’s that exhausted us and yet we appreciated each day with her.  So today I am not going to talk about how hard it was (and it was) I just want to share with you how amazing this woman was.  Richard and I began dating back in 92 (high school) and Richard was her world! We got close really quick. She adored me and I adored her.  I remember at our first Easter together she filled a cute basket with natural grass and Cadbury eggs. She had heard me say how much I liked them.  For every present she ever gave to anyone (and cards) she really put thought into the gift. When I would go shopping for her she would have a detailed list for each person. She never grabbed gift cards or gave money.  She loved nature and animals. She was someone who slowed everything down when you were around her. She noticed the lady bug flying from plant to plant and the humming bird at the feeder and she would smell the flowers of the season. She inspired me to live my life daily! I will have to say she is one person who has impacted my life the most. She told me a few weeks before she died that over her entire motherhood that Richard NEVER ONCE raised his voice at her. That says so much about how she raised him.  Janice was timid due to her past, and she was shy.  She grew up for a time period in an orphanage. She lost two of her fingers at work.  She lost a son to an accidental shooting while he was at a friends house….All the things that would lead most people to depression  and bitterness eventually led Janice to be thankful for the small things and share with me all that she had been through. She taught me how to cook (a lot of yummy casseroles) she allowed me to vent when I was mad and she understood and didn’t offer any advice or opinions. She validated the feelings of my children and me. If they would fall she wouldn’t say get up its going to be ok but instead she would get down in the floor and kiss the boo boo hold them tight  and say I am here. I think about our many conversations about Jesus and me trying to get her to go to church with us. She said “Holly I love Jesus with all my heart and Charles Stanley is the man”  She couldn’t go to church really because of her breathing (COPD) and the heart condition she had struggled with for 10 years. She said” if church would start about 1:00 then I might be able to get going”. She read her bible daily and she would listen to sermons on tapes for years. I remembered when Richard and I decided to take her on a few vacations. She had never been anywhere and so we took her to TN (Gatlinburg) we had an absolute blast. She saw bears, ate cotton candy, rode rides with Rebekah, watched shows and took it all in with such excitement. Then a few years later we took her to Disney World. WOW her description of that place would make anyone want to go there. She rode the tea cups, ate with the princesses, kissed Mickey Mouse, laughed a lot and encouraged us along the way.  If you take anything from this blog take this…

We have everyday to make choices. We can choose to embrace joy through Christ and understand that God has everything under control or take everything too serious and miss it all. Janice understood the meaning of “stop and smell the roses”.   Because of her I am a better wife, a better mother and I choose to embrace life 🙂 So today look around you and reach out to others because you may come across someone like Janice and I promise your life will forever be marked:)  MAKE A DIFFERENCE TODAY….

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