A year ago August 1st, I did what I would have thought the un-thinkable: stand up and talk at my mom's funeral at 26 years old. I didn't think that I could do it, in fact my friend from work was sitting in the batters box waiting to come save me if I got out of control. But somehow I got AMAZING strength that day. I spoke from the heart, and hopefully made my mama and my family proud. Do you know we have HUGE building for a church and that it was packed, standing room only? You would have thought my mother was celebrity. I never knew she had touched so many lives; she did. She wanted me to speak that day so I did, and below is my words chosen ever so carefully. I would like to share them with you, since you have been such a great support system:
My mother wanted me to speak today because she told me she thought I was good with words. I find this one of the hardest writing assignments that I have ever had, not necessarily because of the situation, but because I don’t think I can put into words what she truly meant to all of us. She was amazing and inspiring, but even those I do not feel do her enough justice. What I do know is that she is incredible for fighting for so long and never being bitter to why it had to happen to her. She told me numerous times, “not to put a question mark where God put a period.” That is what she did; she never threw that question mark out there. She accepted what so many could not. Her strength was inspiring. I was blessed to have the opportunity to spend three weeks around the clock with her during Easter. It was at this time I saw another side of my mother. Any daughter would consider her mother wonderful and untouchable, but my awe extended past that when people I did not know came and visited my mom at the house. I heard stories of how she made an impact in their lives. I saw her in a new light, not as my mother, but instead the magnificent friend and role model she was to others. And as people came and went, there was one word which everyone used constantly: inspiring. I then realized they were right and she had been inspiring to her family and others her whole life. She truly felt God needed her early for a higher purpose, a spectacular, amazing purpose in heaven and that she would still be able to influence our lives from heaven. Whatever that higher purpose is, I know that she will give it all her heart, because that is what she did here on earth. I have never known someone who had so much love to give. That is the most important thing I have learned from my mother, is how to love others unconditionally, and because of her I have so much love to give. So today she would want us to celebrate the love she gave to so many of us. She told me she did not what this to be a somber occasion, but instead a celebration of the memories we shared with her. So while it may hurt to accept the fact that she is gone, look into your heart and feel the love she gave to each of you and remember that she is no longer suffering; instead she is fulfilling her higher purpose in heaven as I speak. As she is smiles down on us today, be thankful for the opportunity of knowing such an astounding person; cherish your memories and hold her in your heart forever. Sing loud today so that she can hear up above, she would love that. Though it will feel like eternity, we will see her once again at the heavenly gates. I am so fortunate to have such a wonderful mother and to be able to carry on her love, faithfulness, strength, and humbleness for generations to come.