Thursday, October 13, 2011

And She Is At Peace

My sister lost her battle with on again, off again illness last week. Friday to be exact. The 7th of October. I think she was waiting for the 7th because she would always tells us that 7 was God's number.

She left this world the way she lived, quiet, peaceful, and without a lot of pomp. (In the words of my aunt) She was simply sick of being sick.

The last two months have probably been the hardest of my life. Through it all I have been trying desperately to keep it together for my kids. I love my sister, I miss her more than anything, but I have to maintain a level of acceptable grief for the kids, because they can tell something is not right.

Her last months filled me with so many what ifs'. Wishing some things had been done differently. What if the last four years had been played out
differently. Choices in both of our lives had drifted us to an unacceptable distance from what we always had been. But I mainly place the blame on a person, not her, and not myself.
Something I will carry with me forever.

Growing up we were two peas in a pod even though we had such a big age difference. When I was sick she was the only person I wanted, and as I got older, especially in my teen years, she was my rock. She still is my rock. She will always be my rock.

I don't think that I really have come to terms that she is gone. I almost think that in the back of my head it is all just a dream, and she is going to walk through my front door, or show up at Christmas dinner.

I don't think it really is going to hit me for a while.

In her last months I became her big sister, her protector. She only wanted me. She wanted me
calling the hospital, and talking to the doctors. She wanted me at her side feeding her mashed potatoes from KFC (one of the only things she would eat) she wanted me going to her house
and getting her favorite t-shirt or glasses...

I don't think I will ever accept the diagnosis of an incurable brain infection. It was like something out of a scifi movie, or the lifetime tv special of the week. I am kind of pissed at the medical community as well... nothing they could do for her? That is some bullshit right there...

I was given the task of writing her obituary, and eulogy. How can you sum up your big sister in front of a room of friends and family? You really can't but I did the best I could. I am sure I left a lot out... I know I left a lot out. I couldn't put all of my favorite memories into it or we would have been there all night.

But I wanted to share with those who couldn't be there with us last night.

Where can I even start?

There are truly no simple words in the to sum up the world win life my big sister lead. And it is no secret to all of those who knew her.

Her name came from my mothers thumbaleena doll, and truly fit her as she grew over the years. Her petite little frame which became a joke in her later years because her little sister was giving her hand me down clothes. A little backwards right?

But the true meaning of the name Dawn means sunrise. When we all think about the light she brought into our lives, and how she lived her own, sunrise...sunshine... anything to do with the fresh slate of a new day fits her perfectly.

Every person who came in contact with Dawn could tell she was special but no one could ever place their finger on why.

I can tell you today...

The truth is Dawn is an angel, always has been. She was placed here on earth to watch over all of us, and touch us all in one way or another and I can certainly say she accomplished that!

George Elliot Said:

"The golden moments in the stream of life rush past us and we see nothing but sand. The angels come to visit us, and we only know them when they are gone."

Now you all know Dawn was your angel.

And remember every time you hear a bell ring, an angel gets their wings.

She always pushed limits in life, she never settled for simple. She was too extraordinary to settle for anything less than everything she wanted. And she went for it.

Her greatest accomplishment in life was her boys. Dylan and Jacob were the light of her life. She would do anything, and did anything for her sons. And in these hard days there are no words we can all say to comfort them, but keeping her memory and love alive for them is most important.

Motherhood is the one thing in all the world which most truly exemplifies the God-given virtues of creating and sacrificing.

And that is what Dawn did.

Dawn could talk… and any of you that ever got one of her phone calls middle of dinner, or after bed time phone calls from her knew it. She always had something to go on and on about.

It wasn't until late Friday night my mother and I looked at each other and our disbelief of her passing became real. Solidified by no more two hour long chat sessions in which we sat on the other end saying "Uh huh" "Yup" "Oh" and "Ok I gotta go, I will call you back"

If I could take back all those times I hung up… I would, just to have her back.

I don't think Dawn ever advanced past 1989. She loved everything 80's. From her bright blue mascara, to her collection of hair band ballads. True story… one time Dawn actually dragged me to see Journey, Styx, and REO Speedwagon. She laid down in the back seat of the car, and demanded Frank drive till we got to Hartford, and we had a blast.

Those are the memories I will cherish.

Dawn wouldn't want us all to sit around crying about her death. She would probably kick all of our asses for crying. She may have been tiny, but I wouldn't mess with her! She would want us all to celebrate her life, and all the good memories.

Because this is not goodbye… it is just a see ya later!

Goodbyes are not forever.

Goodbyes are not the end.

They simply mean I'll miss you

Until we meet again!

Our Grandmother who couldn't be with us today wanted me to express how much she truly loves Dawn and misses her. She said "Till we meet again"

I leave you today with Footprints. One of Dawn's favorite poems she always had in her home.

Remember right now, we are all being carried.

One night I dreamed I was walking along the beach with the Lord. Many scenes from my life flashed across the sky.

In each scene I noticed footprints in the sand. Sometimes there were two sets of footprints, other times there was one only.

This bothered me because I noticed that during the low periods of my life, when I was suffering from anguish, sorrow or defeat, I could see only one set of footprints, so I said to the Lord,

“You promised me Lord,

that if I followed you, you would walk with me always. But I have noticed that during the most trying periods of my life there has only been one set of footprints in the sand. Why, when I needed you most, have you not been there for me?”

The Lord replied, “The years when you have seen only one set of footprints, my child, is when I carried you.”


1 comment:

chad * kaity * kami* said...

Beautiful eulogy! Wish I could have been there. xoxo