This is the letter that I wrote to my Great Nana last night and left with her today.
Dear Great Nana,
I cannot even begin to thank you for the example of beauty and grace that you've been in my life. Looking around the room today I was reminded again of how many people you have impacted in your life. Your love, commitment and loyalty to your husband are the very reason that so many of us are here today. As I was talking to Great Papa he was joking about how Josh and I are novices at the whole marriage thing, and with only 2 1/2 years under our belt compared to your 71 years, I'd have to agree. If Josh and I with our marriage could impact half of the people that you and Great Papa did, I'd consider myself blessed. It's really hard saying goodbye. Even after 90 years of life, you were taken too soon. One thing that resounded today about you that really struck me is that you lived life to the fullest. You loved life and wanted to drink every last sip of this beautiful life. And that you did, and you fought to the very end. I want to take that mentality and attitude about life and run with it. You will be missed so very very much. Just know that we all love you so very much and your place in our life will always be so prominent. You've really done a great thing, Nan. We'll take good care of each other, I promise. Until we see each other again...
Today was a difficult day, but with my family around we all made it through. My family is such a precious gem to me. I really am blessed to have so many great people in my family. Even though it was sad it was still a beautiful day.
My dad's cousin Gina spoke beautifully of Great Nana and Great Papa and their life together. Definitely a very touching moment that was a reminder of how precious life and love is.
a flower from the arrangement on her casket
After the funeral the whole family gathered for lunch and I'm so glad we did. I feel like through Great Nana's death we were all brought closer.
We all had a Manhattan in honor of her. She drank one almost every day. It was something simple we could do but it was still very beautiful.
Great Nana, thank you for everything you have been and will be in my life. I really want to live my life like you did. To the fullest.
Cheers to you and the beautiful life you've lived.