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Thank you

Jan 06, 2014 - 3 comments

I just wanted to thank you all for your continued prayers and support these last few weeks.  It's been very difficult to say the least and I've been trying to deal with all the pain right now.  At times I'm ok and then I'm not.  My dad seems to be doing pretty good considering and my sister as well.  I feel as though I'm having more difficulty with everything but I'm going to look into some kind of counseling perhaps.  In the meantime, I wanted to share with you two letters that my sister and I wrote to my mom.  We put them out at the funeral home for everyone to read.  I will also post my eulogy I read to everyone before we left the mass.  

I will slowly be back online more often and I'll try to catch up with each one of you.  Thank you again. xoxo

My letter:
Dear Mom,
I’ve been thinking the last couple of days of all the wonderful memories we have together.  If I sat here and wrote them all down, it would take me days to finish.  So I’m going to try to get through the ones that really stand out to me from when I was a little girl to today.
I was always so excited when you were able to be with me during class trips.  I remember you being with me when we went to have breakfast with Santa Claus.   I remember sitting at a table for two, just you and me having breakfast.   The funny thing is I don’t remember Santa Claus at all.  I loved the time we went to see the Circus at Madison Square Garden.   The funny thing about that memory is I don’t remember the circus at all either.  What I do remember is you holding my hand so tightly as we worked our way through the crowds and down the escalator.  
When I was in First grade, you dressed me as a bride for Halloween.  You gave me your blusher to use as a veil.  I remember you telling me to be careful with it.   What I really remember is how I lost your blusher and I was so upset but you weren’t.  At least I don’t remember you being mad.  
I remember putting on your nightgowns and high heels playing dress up when we lived in Harrison.  I remember how you would take me to the beauty parlor and do my make up for all my dance recitals.  
I remember you taking me to the Harrison Library for Story time, arts and crafts.  
I remember how nervous you were to drive us to the Dentist which required you to drive on the highway.  You would tell us to sit quietly until we got there.  
I remember how you ran around last minute trying to find a gown for me to wear for my grammar school graduation.  I had told you just a few days before that everyone is wearing gowns therefore I had to have one to.  
I remember how you told me that I should keep trying out for the Twirling squad when I was so upset I didn’t make it the first year I tried out.  I remember the pizza party you gave me for my sweet sixteen.  I remember all the band competitions you and dad went to see, freezing your butts off while cheering us on.  
I remember how you helped me filling out all my college applications and how you were ready to kill me (sorry about that) when I decided the week before not to go.  
I remember how excited you were the night I got engaged.  I remember how you helped me decide on my wedding dress.   I have such great memories of getting ready the morning of my wedding, how beautiful you looked in your gown.  When I look at my wedding pictures, I will always remember how happy you were that day.  I’m so happy that we were able to share that day together.  I love to watch the video of you smiling, laughing and having a great time.  
I remember calling you the day I found out I was finally pregnant.  You were so happy and excited, even more so when I told you I was having twin boys.  You couldn’t wait for them to arrive! I will always cherish the memories of having you by my side during my exams, ultrasounds and at my baby shower.  
One of my most favorite times and cherished memory is having your help when I first brought the twins home.  I promise you I will always tell my boys how you and daddy stayed with us the first five months of their lives.  I will make sure they know how you took care of them right from the day they came home.   I will tell them how you sang “Love me Tender” to them to help them fall asleep.
These are just some of the memories that come to mind.
I just want to thank you for teaching me love, kindness, respect, friendship and faith. Thank you for always being there for me during the good and the bad times.  For never judging me and always listening when I needed someone to talk to.   For lending me a shoulder to cry and lean on when I needed one.  
Thank you for giving me my love of books, reading and writing.   Thank you for all the wonderful birthday, holidays and family vacations.  Thank you for being such a great mom and teaching me how to be a mom too.   You set the bar so high, I hope one day I’m as good a mom as you are.
I promise I will be there for Patty and Teddy when they have their baby.   I will make sure I pass all the things you taught me about baby care to Patty.  I will throw her the best baby shower ever!
I promise to kiss and hug the boy’s goodnight from Grandma every night.  I promise they will know who you are, how much they meant to you and how much you loved them.  
Lastly, I promise to take care of dad for as long as he is with us.  I will make sure he has happy days, wonderful memories and peaceful nights.  
Mommy, I love you forever to the moon and back.  Until we meet again, I love you.  
Love Always,

My sister's letter:
Dear Mom, my Angel,
I know God needed an angel and he guided you to heaven.  Thank you for teaching me to love with all my heart…. to show kindness to all….but most of all always keeping God and my family in my daily life to guide me in the right direction.

I love you and no matter what I do and No matter where I am, you will always be with me.  
Until the day we meet again in Heaven, I love you always.

Love Always your little daughter,


God Took her to his loving home.
God saw her getting tired, a cure was not to be.
He wrapped her in his loving arms and whispered “Come with me.”
She suffered much in silence, her spirit did not bend.
She faced her pain with courage, until the very end.
She tried so hard to stay with us but her fight was not in vain.
God took her to his loving loving home and freed her from the pain.


My earliest memory of my mom is when I was about 3 years old.  We were both laying down taking a nap and she suddenly sat up and looked at me.  She said to me, “Mommy is going to go to the hospital now to get your brother or sister.”  The next thing I knew, my nanny came upstairs and we watched as she got into a car to go and apparently give birth to my sister, Patty.  For some reason I always remembered that day.  
I have many memories of my mom, as I’m sure this is the case for many of us. Your relationship with your mother is one of the most important relationships you will have during your lifetime.  Your mom is the first person you loved and the first person who taught you how to love.  She’s the first person in your life who taught you many of your first life lessons, if not all of them.  Some of the things she taught you will be obvious in your everyday life and there are the lessons that are hidden until the time you need them.  
I realized about a month ago during a conversation with my mom that she continues to teach me even as an adult.  Many of us go through life questioning our faith, our religion and our ability to believe in things we don’t necessarily see in front of us.    I had a difficult time during my mom’s illness coming to terms with God and his intentions.  
I asked my mom if she had any doubts about her religion, or God with everything that was happening.  She very quickly, said, “No.”  She said to me, “I can’t tell you that I’m not disappointed, as I know I have so many people praying for me.”  I said to her, “This is what I’m struggling with now, why hasn’t he answered our prayers?”  She said, “Well, Father Granada once told her a little story about God answering our prayers.  He hasn’t answered our prayers just yet, not yet, but he still can.  Father Granada told me that when we pray to God, it’s almost like a child asking repeatedly for something they cannot have.  Eventually, we give in, and give it to them.   It’s not a perfect analogy, but he said sometimes you just have to keep praying to get your answer.”  
At that moment, I realized that she still believes in God, our faith and the power of prayer.  I thought to myself if she could still believe and hasn’t given up on God, then I can’t either.  I really believe now this is probably the last lesson she really taught me.  
I am sure my mom was greeted happily by my grandparents, her grandparents and all the pets we lost along the way.  I can sleep a little easier knowing my family and I have our own angel watching over us now.    
My Aunt Rosemarie also reminded me last week this is not the end for my mom but the beginning of her Eternal life with God.  The life we all will live with God one day.   We will all be together again someday, in the meantime, always treasure the time you have here on Earth.  Make the most of each day, love one another and keep God by your side.  No matter what happens in your life, God is always by your side.  
God Bless you all.

One last note,
I just want to take the time to acknowledge my dad and how he took care of my mom the last 13 months.  He was at her side, 24/7.   His devotion, care and  love is what I believe gave my mom the strength to get through each day.  Patty and I want to thank him for being such a rock and taking care of our mom.  We love him very much.  
Lastly,  my dad would always tell my mom every day, sometimes several times a day, but he would always tell her I love you more today than I did yesterday.   Make sure when you go home tonight to your loved ones, you take the time to tell them how much you love them.  

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by Sheaby, Jan 06, 2014
What a beautiful eulogy, Joann.  There's only so many times you can hear how sorry everyone is for your loss, so I won't say it again - but I am so glad that you got to say goodbye to her.  I know it doesn't seem like a good thing, but in a world where so many people don't get the opportunity to say goodbye, you have been blessed.  It seems like your mother was a pillar of strength and touched the lives of many people.  Someone like her will continue to touch lives for many more years, despite no longer being physically there to do so.  It's going to take time for you all to heal emotionally, mentally, and even physically - but you will.  You will never "get over it" or forget, but you will learn to accept it and move through it.  

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by Grace358, Jan 06, 2014
Joann, all I read above is how much Love and gratitude you had for your mother and all the gifts that she shared with you. I know that you valued her and everything that she taught you, your sister and father. You are right, she is now with God, the angels and family members and loved ones. She is no longer in physical pain, its us humans that grieve and feel the pain and loss. Go slowly through your pain and allow yourself the time you need to heal and mend your broken heart. How beautiful that your boys got to share the first 5 months of their lives with her, they will always remember that in their hearts.
Sending you all love, strength and courage

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by mandaszoo, Jan 09, 2014
Beautiful  ! Losing someone so precious is the hardest thing in the world. It is so obvious from your writing what a lovely, close family you have and that your mum was a very special lady who loved you all very much. I am sure your dad and sister are taking strength from this triangle of love and support you are giving each other .
I cant say I know exactly how you feel as I am lucky to have my mum but I have lost a baby daughter many years ago . I found it very difficult to cope with this but one thing I will say to you is that your mum will be with you forever in your heart. remembering all those special times will help you eventually. One thing that I learned from losing my Sophie was to appreciate all that i have and be grateful for the precious short time I had with her and how blessed I am now > Hugs Amanda x

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