The Family

On September 29th your daughter passed on, she is gone. You were holding her only a couple of hours ago. Your heart doesn’t want to accept what you know to be true… But, she will always live in your heart. Your memories keep her alive. Now,  you are the ones who must make the decisions, you must make the choices, the arrangements. It’s so hard to comprehend…so many things must be finalized…

My daughter passed over on September 27, 1978. I thought about my Amanda as I drove to Kansas. There is nothing worse than the waiting. I will never forget the feeling of being led from one place to another to make arrangements for her funeral. I felt like I was in a bad dream watching events unfold that hurt to much to be true.

When I looked at my phone, after spending a couple of hours painting yesterday morning, I saw the text with bad news from my cousin in Wichita, KS.. My Aunt Dody was spending the week with her son, Jerry. I called him back and my aunt Dody was still with him. They were still waiting on word about the funeral. I got in my car and arrived just in time for lunch. I stayed for several hours. Mainly, I wanted to keep my sweet aunt from worrying while we waited for the phone to ring. I really enjoyed all of us sitting around the table talking…remembering.

My aunt was the girls step-great grandmother, my cousins, Lew Ann and Lonnie were her grandparents, she was our family and she was loved. We felt her loss deeply, when she passed as a result of disabilities that she could no longer overcome. A couple of hours later the call came with all the information about the funeral arrangements. The unknowing was over. Plans could be made.

This child, who is whole and healthy now in a way she never knew in this life, was born with her disability. She lived with it for 18 (maybe 19) years, which was remarkable in it’s self. She didn’t have the use of her legs and she had a trach, which made it difficult for her to speak. But, that didn’t stop her from talking in short sentences, She would say hello and thank you when you told her how pretty she looked.

She was a blessing! She was always happy and she enjoyed being with family all around, especially at Christmas time. My aunt Dody sat with her for a couple of hours just two weeks ago. She was glad that she had that time with her, just the two of them. She was teaching her to  embroidery and they played some games. It is a good memory for my aunt to have.

All of this adds up to a Young Lady who brought joy into everyone else’s life in spite of her disability. I was a very lucky person to have spent some time with this special Young Lady. If you were lucky enough to have known her and seen her sweet smile. Or have been touched by her life story, you would know what a special person she truly was. We will miss her…

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