The Matriarch

She had many who loyally dedicated themselves to her. Not because of who she was, but because of what she did. She unselfishly dedicated her life to them. And they loved her for it.

Most of the world will never know her. To them she would be insignificant and unimportant. But in her small corner she will be held in the highest regard.

She held no official office or carried any official title. But that did not stop the reverence we felt when we called her, simply…


She had plenty of reasons to be bitter – she outlive 3 of her 10 children, survived an extremely abusive husband, worked nights waiting tables to provide for her family because that same husband drank and gambled most of  his earnings away – but she wasn’t. She loved life and raised her family to be the same. Her only complaint was the slowing down that came with age… she didn’t like it!

Mostly, she didn’t like the fact that it robbed her of her independence. Even though she had spent her life taking care of those she loved and they’d do anything for her because of it, she didn’t want to burden anyone. And in death, she kept to this. No frantic calls to EMS or days spent hovering in the hospital. After visiting with a couple of her children and talking on the phone with others, she went to sleep Friday night and didn’t wake up Saturday morning. Peaceful.

Her real joy came from her family… and it was large. I watched today as the chapel filled. There were a few friends and aquaintances scattered about, but then the family entered and the room was full – 7 surviving children with spouses, 16 grandchildren (many with spouses), 10 great-grandchildren and a herd of extended family.

Family is often messy, sometimes hard, but always beautiful!

Tomorrow, Christmas Eve, will be spent at Nanny’s like we have done for as long as I can remember. Presents will be opened, bellies will be filled and laughs will be heard. It’s what she would want us to do. But it won’t be quite the same without her sitting there quietly basking in the joy that is HER family… her blessing.

Nanny, you will be missed! We love you!!


2 Responses

  1. What a wonderful tribute and you described her perfectly. She was proud of her family. She left you a great legacy.

  2. sorry to hear about your grandmother clint, but i’m glad you got to spend one ore holiday in her home remembering her. sounds like it was a special time.

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