This is nothing new. Everyone has lost loved ones. There was no tragedy that took her from us early. She was ready to go. In the days and weeks before she passed she spoke of being ready to go home and getting to see her husband and sisters again. I am happy for her and am in awe of her unshakable faith that she clung to all the way to the end.
We seem to all have this mistaken idea that a quiet life is not worth leading. That no one will champion a name that isn't famous. It is wrong to think that no one will tell stories about a life lived well in relative obscurity.
My grandmother lived a quiet life. She was astonishingly humble. She never looked for praise or notoriety. She didn't seek fame or fortune. She was so quiet and sweet it wasn't until I looked back at her life as a whole that I realized how amazing she was.
She was a teacher, first of English and of music. She passed a love of the written word to me. She was a breast cancer survivor and had a stroke that left her paralyzed on half of her body for most of her life. She was tough, but didn't have to yell to prove it, in fact I only heard her raise her voice in anger once in my thirty one years.
I only found this out after she passed that she wrote letters of encouragement to women with breast cancer. Ensuring them that there is life after cancer. Giving them hope, sharing peace with them. She kept this to herself never looking for accolades.
The love story that unfolded over the course of my grandparents life together is nothing short of awe-inspiring. A love story that was loyal and true. That lasted from the day they met until death stole him from her.
This is the legacy I have. It was passed to me. This humble sweet woman who lived in a small house on a farm in the middle of nowhere, who wasn't rich or famous. This is why I think this quiet life is worth celebrating, worth sharing here and now. In the weeks before she passed, sensing her time was short, she made phone calls to us. She called me and after letting me know that she will always love me, she told me to remember to always love everybody. To choose love. In the life we lead of rushing around, trying to make money and build our own empires...at the end what was important to her
That is the legacy. That is worth celebrating.