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My Letter to Mimi

My Letter to Mimi

Today, March 25, 2013, my beloved grandmother left us for heaven. She was healthy and young in spirit until the moment a cerebral hemorrhage took her away. I need to write to process her loss, but for now, I am just thankful that I had the opportunity to tell her just what she meant to me only a few months ago, when we celebrated her 90th birthday in October 2012. So today, on the day of her death, I post this letter that I got to read to her when we celebrated her beautiful life.

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Mimi,

This is the most momentous of birthdays…90 years. What a blessing from the Lord – there are few who are able to see 90 years in this life. Ultimately, however, what matters most is not how many years you have, but how you spend them. One of the reasons you have so many people here, loving you and wanting to celebrate your 90th birthday, is because you have done just that – you have spent your years well. You’ve not just lived 90 years – you have given your years, and given them well.

You have always been the “giver”. Some of my best memories are of Easters growing up when you came to visit us and “The Easter Bunny” did her thing. Candy, clothes, toys – special gifts that you picked out specifically for each one of us. Everyone had to take turns (there was NO opening a gift until The Easter Bunny gave the ok) and everyone had to attentively watch every other person unwrap his or her gifts. Not only did it show us what giving to others means, but we learned from you to appreciate what is given to others, rather than simply revel in our own abundance.

But your giving didn’t stop at holidays. Every single year of our lives, you have recognized our birthdays with cards and that little yellow sticky that always covered up an extra special surprise. You’ve changed the way we see sticky notes forever! And when we visited you, there was Entenmann’s for breakfast, trips out on the boat with Papa Fred, and shopping for special outfits. But even more than all of that, you gave to us by listening to our stories, genuinely enjoying our company, and sharing, in your own Mimi way, how much you loved us. You know you’ve done something right when one of your grandchildren comes to spend one of the nights of their honeymoon at your house!

As we have gotten older, what you have given to us has been ever so much more important than gifts from the store or special surprises. You’ve given us the picture of a person whose life has been in the hands of the Lord. Of one who knows whose she is. And of a woman that is able to love others so fully, so wonderfully, so completely, because she has the love of the Lord inside her.

You have given joy, even when the circumstances in your life would have left many people bitter and angry. You have given perseverance, when lesser women would have given up and taken the easy way. You have given grace, even when people in your life have not followed the path you would have chosen for them. You have given faith, even when life didn’t make sense and you couldn’t see the plan of the Father. You have given wisdom, when many of us didn’t know which way was best. You have given comfort, when we have been through excruciating sorrow. But most of all, you have given love. Love that doesn’t come from needing to be given something in return, but from the fact that you have been loved by the Lord. And every one of us has been touched by that love.

There are many people who are given years, and they use them for themselves. But you, Mimi, have had 90 years. And you’ve used them for the Lord. Because of that, you leave a legacy behind you. A legacy of 3 generations that get to see a picture of the Father. A model of how God made us to be – living in communication with Him throughout our years, and giving to others out of the love He has given to us. What greater legacy could be left?

No matter how many more birthdays you get to experience, no matter how many more years the Lord blesses you with, you can know this: You have spent your years well – by giving them. Giving them to others, because of what the Lord has given you. Not only do you have 3 generations of children who love you more than we can express, but whenever your years here come to an end, you can know that the tables will turn. Because of your choice to spend your years giving out of your love for the Father, you will get to live for eternity in His love. You will get to hear, “Well done, good and faithful servant. Come and share in your master’s happiness”.

And on that day, instead of being the giver, you will get to receive the gift.

2 Responses to “My Letter to Mimi”

  1. Mary Lee Loope says:

    Rebecca, What you have written for your grandmother is beautiful. The smile on her face shows a lot. She was surrounded by those she loved on her 90th birthday. This is what she wanted. You will always have the memories in your heart. God bless your family and prayers go out to each of you. My love to you and your family.

  2. Phyllis Petty says:

    Rebecca, what a beautiful letter to your MiMi. She had to be the best MiMi is the world. God truly blessed your family. I know you will miss her. I think your mother learned a lot from her and she too is doing a marvelous job of being a very special grandmother. I will miss seeing you and your children growing up in the coming years.

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