My Mee-Maw* was 91 years old and lived independently up until just a few months before her death when she moved in with my Aunt Jean. She was as funny, quick witted, big-hearted and classy in her last days as when we were kids running around her tiny house on Madewell Ave.
[*Note: I've chosen to officially go with this spelling of Mee-Maw's name, although there are many versions floating around. But this was the way she signed her name on the birthday, graduation, or anniversary cards that she never, ever forgot to send.]
We always lived far away from Mee-Maw, which made the times we had with her even more precious. The last time I saw her was when we stopped in for a just a couple hours on our way to visit Micah and Missy last summer. She couldn't take her eyes of of her great-granddaughters who she adored so much.
This photo was from Ruby's third birthday celebration. Ruby is named after Mee-Maw (Ruby Marie Screws), so it was a special treat to have her with us for that.
When I got the call that she had passed away, I was caught off guard. It happened very quickly and I wasn't prepared for the news. I fell on the floor in a heap and wept for just one more time to see her, introduce her to Silas, see her life with one less leg, and play a game of Hand and Foot.
But after the initial shock wore off, it became harder and harder to be sad for her. She had wanted to go home. She was ready. She loved Jesus. She wanted to see Anita. Now she's there with them. She is whole. She has her leg back and a nice, straight back and strong hands. Mee-Maw is happy and free.
My sister Amber, my brother Joe, his wife Becky, and my brother Nate and I caravaned to Memphis for the funeral, along with the three amigos (Isaac: 9 months, Christian: 7 months, and Silas: 6 months).
The trip was a blessing indeed, as every single one of the Screws family cousins (except my brother Micah, who is overseas) got to be together for the first time in decades. It was absolutely wonderful to have the whole family together like that, although I wish we had done that for Mee-Maw before she was gone. Why do we always wait to come together? At a funeral, it's too late. Someone is missing.
Nevertheless, I think Mee-Maw was watching from heaven and I'm sure she got teary-eyed seeing all of us together.
God was gracious to my mama by allowing her to be in Memphis with Mee-Maw when she died. I'm so glad He is in control of these details and has the timing of our lives worked out perfectly. Here is a picture of Mama and my siblings, minus Micah, after the funeral at Aunt Jean's new home.
Mee-Maw, I love you. You gave so selflessly, loved so richly, and smiled to genuinely. Our lives will not be the same without you here, but our hearts soar with the thought of you with your dear Savior.
Give Anita a hug for me. Love you.
We can cry with hope
We can say goodbye with hope
Because we know our goodbye is not the end
We can grieve with hope
Because we believe with hope
That there's a place where we'll see her face again