March 3, 2011

Remembering a wonderful woman

After this post I promise that I will return to detailing all of the happy times in our lives since you have arrived, but first I need to tell you one more difficult story.

I need to tell you about the beautiful, amazing woman that was your Grandma Donita.

Donita with her baby boy (your daddy!) at our wedding. June 14, 2008

I cannot do her justice here on this page, but it is my hope that you will know her through our memories and through the kind and wonderful hearts of her children and grandchildren who knew her and learned from her.

On December 1st, 2009 Donita lost her battle with thyroid cancer. She had been sick for about a year, but she always kept such a positive attitude and outlook on life that her passing still came as a bit of a shock to us all.

The last day that we all spent together was Thanksgiving day, which we hosted at our new house. The day was spent lounging and eating and catching up with family. Donita was not able to eat much, but she staked herself out on one of our big comfy couches and throughout the day it seemed she made sure each of us had a chance to sit and chat with her. I don't know if she had any idea of the future, but I am glad she took those moments to touch each of us another time.

At the time I was 19 weeks pregnant with you and December 1st had been a day I was longing for. It was the day of our big ultrasound, the day we would know if you were a Lily or a Jack. Many people like the idea of being surprised and waiting until the baby is born to find out the gender. I am not one of those people. I couldn't wait to start anticipating, planning and dreaming about exactly what our future would hold.

That morning Ryan(your dad :)) and I were driving into work when Grandpa Roy called and told us that Donita was not doing well. Ryan dropped me off and went straight to the hospital. Just hours later he called me to let me know they were discussing hospice care. I immediately called Papa who came and brought me to the hospital.

I am grateful that we had enough notice that all of her kids were able to fly in and we were all with her when she passed. I have never experienced a room filled with so much love and sorrow and grief. I am so thankful for this beautiful family and how they have supported each other through everything. It is truly Donita's legacy that her children and grandchildren are the warm, kind, intelligent, love-until-it-hurts kind of people that they are.

An hour later I left that room for another doctors office just down the street. In an emotional daze I waited for my own appointment. Some crazy scheduling errors at the office gave us enough time that Ryan was actually able to make it.  I am forever grateful to whatever powers of the universe allowed that to happen as he so needed to see his little baby. I can't tell you what it did for us to see that healthy little life on such an otherwise dark day. Donita had been joking that we should have a boy so she could buy us those pee-pee tee-pees, but she knew how badly I wanted a girl and she just loved the name we had chosen.  There we were just hours after her passing seeing our little baby, seeing you. Our Lillian.

It saddens me to my core that she is not here to hold you and kiss you and laugh at your crazy hair or the funny faces that you make. Even though she isn't physically here now, I know she loves you. I cannot wait to see what personality traits you may have inherited from her. I see the stubborn and mischievous gleam in your eye already.

1 comment:

  1. She sounds like a wonderful woman. I'm sad to read this but so happy you had time to get to know her and can share your memories with Lily.


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