It’s been a while. It’s nice to be back.
As many of you will have gathered, I’ve taken some time away from blogging and other commitments. My mother-in-law Gail passed this past week after a valiant battle with pancreatic cancer and the whole family is healing but still reeling. We held a celebration of her life today and I’m humbled by all the kind thoughts that have come our way. She was a wonderful woman, and it is to her credit that so many paid their respects.
This journey has been tough in many ways but I feel as if I’ve relearned the power of love. So many little gestures and words have made an impression on me during this time.
As a wife, I’ve had to see my husband endure what will probably always be one of the hardest moments of his life. But as he so eloquently said in his eulogy, his mother would have wanted us all to pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off and move forward. It was how she lived her life, even during the darkest times.
As a mom, I’ve watched my children lose their first grandparent. I know this moment will stay with them. I had to watch my youngest son break into tears, trying to wrap his young mind around how this can happen to his Nana. And my eldest son demonstrated such grace under pressure, holding her hand in the hospital, helping to feed her and bring water to her lips. His own short speech at the memorial made me proud, as much as heart-broken.
It’s been hard, just as it’s hard whenever anyone loses a loved one. I know she is at peace now, and probably having a lovely glass of wine in Heaven. And even though I still want to crawl into the nearest hole and stay there for a while, it’s time to pick myself up, dust myself off and move forward. It’s what Gail would have wanted.
So often during the last few weeks, I’ve heard the song “I Lived” by One Republic, one of my favorite bands. I almost feel as if the song has been a little reminder from my mother-in-law, that she’s letting us know she lived and that she did it well.
And now, so must we.