My great grandma, or Nana as she is affectionately known, would be celebrating her 95th birthday if she were still here with us. I don't know quite how to eloquently express how very much this very special lady meant to my family...and words can never say how much she is still missed 3 years after she left this world. But I feel as if I should give it a try. Sending these words straight to Heaven......
Dearest Cecile Ann,
When I was a child and asked what I wanted to be when I grew up, I'm sure I answered with a long list of occupations that I thought were glamorous or fun. If you were to ask me now, my first answer would be I want to grow up to be just like my Nana.
You were, and still are, the single most influential person who has ever graced my life. And I truly believe that, despite your orneriness at times, you were one of God's most precious angels. We were so very very blessed to call you our own.
Your grace, your beauty, your innate kindness and unwavering faith carried us all through hard times, just as your laughter marked the good ones. When grey skies threatened, all it took was a hug from you to bring the sunshine back. We all grew strong and beautiful under your gentle love and care.
We miss you. More than words can ever say.
However, even though some days I would trade almost anything for one of those hugs or to pick up the phone and find you on the other end, I have realized throughout the last year and a half that you have never really left us.
When I found out I was pregnant with my sweet Lydia, I missed you. I knew that you would have been the first to ignore all the reasons why it wasn't good timing and the first to truly realize that a miracle had been given to us. But I also feel that had you been here, Lydia would not exist. Somehow, I just know that you interceded on my behalf and hand picked the beautiful creation that God gave to me.......
Because of that I wanted desperately to honor you by giving her your name. And I heard your voice as clearly as if you were sitting right beside me say, "Don't you dare name that baby Cecile." Never one to disobey a direct order from you, I settled instead on Lydia Ann. I'm pretty sure you smiled.
Throughout my entire pregnancy, you were beside me. Encouraging me to lean on the One whom you leaned on so faithfully throughout your life. I felt you with me, I smelled your scent, I heard your voice (and your laughter on about a thousand occasions!). I know that you sat beside us in that waiting room on the day of Liddy's surgery, holding our hands and praying, even though I'm sure all along you already knew the outcome. Knowing that you are only a breath away is a comfort to me. It gives me strength......
Lydia has a saying on the wall above her crib..."Angels danced on the day you were born." I know without a doubt that you were one of them. And I sincerely feel that you are up there dancing your heart out in celebration of my precious daughter and the changes she has made to me which bring me closer and closer to being like my hero. You.
There have been many times that I have wished with all of my heart that you were here with us, that you had the chance to see Liddy and for the two of you to know each other. But somehow I think you already do. :)
She has so much of you running through her veins. Your generous loving nature, your heart melting smile, your infectious laugh. Not to mention your strength, your determination, and your orneriness. :) I simply couldn't have ever imagined that every single day I would see you over and over again in the face of my miracle.
Thank you for all the unconditional love you have given me. Thank you for always being there when I need you most. Thank you for being such a wonderful example of the type of woman I want to be. Thank you for your prayers, your tears, your laughter, and for thousands of wonderful memories.
And above all, thank you for infusing this amazing little girl with so much of yourself.
You are always loved immensely and will never be forgotten......
All of my love,