My grandmother, Lois Jennings, was a true gift from God. To describe someone you love in words, especially Grandma, is difficult but if I had to choose I would say wise, graceful, loving, courageous, giving, stubborn, and above all, strong. She had a wonderful spunk about her and once she’d made her mind up about something, it was often difficult to convince her otherwise.
Grandma was also a very faithful woman. Not an in-your face kind of faith, but a quiet, personal faith with a depth beyond what any of us ever thought. She didn’t go to church, but she lived her life according to God’s word and instilled those same values in her children and grandchildren.
And boy did she love her family. Every holiday she remembered all of her grandkids by giving us some sort of treat–no matter what our age. It also didn’t matter if it was Valentine’s Day, Halloween, or any other, you could expect something from Grandma & Grandpa. They never missed a birthday either. Even as I entered by 20s, I could expect them to visit me on my birthday. It never mattered if they felt like going somewhere or not, they always pushed and made the effort. To this day, that is what I am most grateful for. She was never too sick, too tired or too anything to be there for her family and show them how much she loved them.
Thank you, Grandma, for the amazing gifts you have given our family. No one should have gone through what you did, especially not you. But you did it with courage, strength and grace that only God could have supplied and you taught our family more than words can say.
This prayer hung on the wall in my grandmother’s bathroom for as long as I can remember. She also carried a copy with her on an index card in her own handwriting.
Dear God, When I am lonely and…Perhaps I feel despair…Let not my ailing heart forget…That You hear every prayer…Remind me that no matter what…I do or fail to do…There still is hope for me as long…As I have faith in You…Let not my eyes be blinded by…Some folly I commit…But help me to regret my wrong…And to make up for it…Inspire me to put my fears…Upon a hidden shelf…And in the future never to…Be sorry for myself…Give me the restful sleep I need…Before another dawn…And Bless me in the morning with…The courage to go on.
A Strong Woman
A strong woman
Is one who feels deeply
and loves fiercely.
Her tears flow
just as abundantly
as her laughter.
A strong woman
Is both soft and powerful.
She is both
practical and spiritual.
A strong woman
In her essence
is a gift to all the world.
My grandmother carried these words, among other poems and prayers, with her everyday. No one, not even my grandfather, knew this until after she passed away on November 13, 2007. She lived these words everyday of her life and she truly was a gift to this world and our family. She taught us the true meaning of life, how to gracefully accept the things we cannot change and to trust in the Lord’s plan. Sometimes it is sad that we don’t see the truth depth of someone until their final days, but I am ever grateful for the gifts my grandmother gave our family in her final moments. I cannot describe in words what an amazing, wise, loving, and caring woman she was. No matter how sick she got, she was always more concerned with her family than herself. In her last weeks, I remember visting her and her always asking, “How was your day?” Even during her worst days, she made it a point to show she cared and was still there to lend an ear. She has left us a great legacy, and in the words of my aunt, “some impossible shoes to fill.”
Last updated on: 08/08/2008
This was my Aunt and I and learned so much about life through her. She taught me about forgivness, kindness and the ability to move pass difcult issues and saying ” I love you”. I belive when God calls we will be together again.
angela brooks – 08/11/2008
Great thikning! That really breaks the mold!
Pokey Pokey – 06/02/2011
I want to know if the woman Lesley loved did marry that doctor. Fascinating.When my mohter passed away my sister swore she heard the doorbell ring in the middle of the night it woke her up, the night my mom passed away. We also received a letter from a college friend of my Mother’s who didn’t know Mom had passed away, the friend relayed that she dreamt Mom had visited her and was laughing and saying We did have fun back then didn’t we? Referring to their life as two fresh-out-of-college single women inSan Francisco. And this dream took place on the evening my Mom passed over.We did write the friend back to unfortunately break the news of Mom’s passing but also to thank her for the story.Suzanne U.
Dwiindra Dwiindra – 09/03/2012