I hope you knew how much you meant

This wasn’t supposed to happen. It feels like being trapped in a painful, dark nightmare and I just want to wake up and you’ll be sitting in your chair and the people that I love no longer have their hearts split in two.

I hope you knew how special and important you were – to everyone – TO ME. What an amazing example of what unconditional love really means. What an incredible display of what it means to build a family of people that would do anything for each other at any minute; people who enjoy being together; who support each other; who SHOW UP! All the things you did. And there are families that don’t have that, that don’t do that.

I hope you knew that you were the rock, the glue, the foundation, the centerpiece to this family you built with Perry for longer than my current lifetime. I watched you be an amazing mom and grams and wife – I saw you make everyone of your grandkids feel like they were the most special person in the world. I saw the relationship you built with your daughter – the same one she is modeling her relationship with her daughters after – open, unconditional, always there, supportive but real. I see how strong your sons are but so sweet, so kind and so grounded in love, even the big one. I see that after more than 47 years with someone their heart doesn’t break, it shatters. I hope you you knew how much you meant.

I hope you knew that I (and everyone else) could feel how much you loved me just by how you looked at me or because you always found a way to do something special or thoughtful or nice or just you-ish to let me know that I was part of it all too. Or simply because you told me that you loved me. I hope you know how much that meant! I felt it, I knew it and I love you back. So much.

Life is complicated and messy and I hope you knew that your love and acceptance meant everything to me. In a difficult situation from the start, all you ever showed me was: first kindness, and then love, and then acceptance and then more love. I don’t know that I can adequately put into words how it felt to watch you not change one bit – maybe slip a pronoun early on – but not change one bit on how you treated me or made me feel. To know that you would straight up tell somebody where they could stick it if they came for me, to know that you maybe didn’t understand it but you knew what was important – love. You looked me in the eyes and said “if you’re happy, I’m happy.” I hope you knew that just by being you that you were helping me to be ME. And it mattered and it hurts that you’re gone.

I hope you know that it hurts that you’re gone. Everyone is in pain and it is hard. Why us? Why now? What could we have done? This can’t be real. Why YOU? WHAT THE F#CK! All the things floating in the air right now. My heart is broken because I lost you too. I lost a “mom” who never missed and I’m struggling to keep it together while watching all of these people that I love who lost their core – but I’m going to do what I watched you do since the day I met you – love them, support them, do whatever I can to help them be ok – or as ok as they can be.

And, I hope you knew that I love your daughter with my whole heart – I will take care of her and love her with no limits forever, I promise. I hope you knew that I love your granddaughters like my own – I will do any and everything I can to make sure they are ok. I hope you knew what you did for Avery – my heart explodes with love every time I think about how your love, (your UNCONDITIONAL love), showed her that she is and always will be perfect just as she is. I promise to always make her feel that way. I PROMISE.

So funny, so fun, so sweet, so tell it like it is, so always there, so accepting – SO WONDERFUL. I love you. I love this family you made. I’m thankful for the time I had with you. Wanted and needed more – just like everyone else that knew and loved you.

Rest in sweet peace.

I hope you knew how much you meant.

For Sandy, my mother-in-law, who was the definition of love and gone too son. ❤️

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