She was an amazing person. She was strong and independent and everything I strive to be. She raised 4 children almost alone while my Papa was in the Army. They moved to Lawton, OK finally from Rockford, IL.
We were so close since she used to babysit my brother and I all the time when we were younger and lived closer. She wasn't that typical grandmother, that I didn't really know and just shied away from. Although, she lived 4 hours away from me pretty much all my life, I was extremely close to her. I could talk to her about anything. She always made an attempt to come see my dance recitals when she could, which meant the world to me since dance was a huge part of my life growing up. She was always sure to send me cards for every occasion, newspaper clippings of articles she thought I'd like, recipes, religious books, health tips she'd cut out from magazines and much much more. Even though I'd only see her a few times each year, its like we'd never skipped a beat.
When she got sick this Christmas season, it was such a shock. She spent the whole Christmas in bed. It was really hard not having her out in the living room enjoying all the festivities with us. In the next few weeks, her condition got worse and on January 13, 2012...she left this world and joined God in heaven. It was one of the toughest things I've ever endured visiting her in the hospital. You just pray that she would get better and get up and leave, but God needed her more beside him. I envy him.
She was strong in her faith, I wish I was. That is how I know without a doubt she is with God. Never fail, she would be in church. She always made sure to mail me a Lent or Advent booklet and prayer cards. She helped keep me stronger in my faith even if I wasn't in church every Sunday.
I can't explain how much I miss her everyday. I wear one ring on my right hand she gave me several years ago with an A on it. It was my great grandmothers that was made by my great grandfather for her in the steel factory he worked in. On my left hand, the one she left to me in her passing. It was my great grandmother's wedding ring. She wore it everyday, and so do I. When I miss her, or am having a rough day, I just squeeze that ring tight.
It breaks my heart to know that she will never be at my wedding, to see my kids born, to see my brother's graduation from college. I am so blessed that she was able to come to both my high school and college graduations. I won't take those moments back for anything. She was always so proud of me, even if I didn't feel I was that outstanding, she always made me feel like I was.
I will always love you Nana. I miss you with all my heart.
My Nana and I when I was a baby.