I’ve come to realize that God provides family in a variety of ways. For some, the path is clear and  traditional – through the physical womb. Yet, for many of us, God uses non-traditional yet just as authentic methods. Through seemingly random circumstances God slowly built a family unit. Gerald was Lori’s principal at Weisenborn. I was Lauren’s choral director years later. Yet, if we but look closely, we see the divine hand of a God of order and clear intent. Neither Gerald nor I passed through Granny’s womb. Consequently, neither Jonathan, Jamie nor Hezekiah has her physical DNA. Yet, we – each of us – passed through Granny’s heart and thus her spiritual womb.  So we were connected. Granny loved us and we loved her. Transplants to Dayton, Granny provided a crucial missing element, the wisdom and presence of an elder. It was a rare birthday that didn’t start with an organ fanfare of Happy Birthday. Our Granny loved music – singing, playing her beloved organ, talking about music, listening to it. On Thanksgiving, her voice rang out cheerfully, especially when, after dinner, games replaced dinner plates. A fierce Scrabble competitor, Granny gleefully did her best to spell everyone under the table.

I have precious memories of Granny but they are far too few! I want more. I need more. Hindsight teaches what we must clearly learn to see in the present; it is folly to presume a day that is not promised. Today, right now, is all we ever have in which to show people how much they mean to us. I will cherish the bright smile Granny gave me when she opened her eyes and saw me in her hospital room. I’ll long remember her chuckle as I teased her about being well so I could keep my promise to host high tea for her 91st birthday.

Sweet Granny, thank you for adopting us into your heart and family. Your absence will be deeply felt and your legacy an aspirant goal. I want to have as many spiritual children and grandchildren as you. I want my life to be as full and rich as yours was. When it’s my time to join you in Glory I pray I will have lived, loved, cared, laughed, teased, directed family, and given advice (solicited and unsolicited) with a measure of your grace. Well done, Granny!

Daughter Donna


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