Monday, February 29, 2016
Joan was a part of my life for probably 58 years. First she held me in the nursery at church, later taught me in Sunday School, then when I was an acolyte, she would fix my robe before I would leave the choir room. Later when she married my dad she became my step mom ... the word step mom can bring bad thoughts to one's mind in the world of Disney ...
but I'm really not a princess.
She helped me, a 20 something grow into a strong young woman by giving me space and teaching me to clean the hair trap in the bathtub! Yeah she hated when I was a slob.
Later at my wedding she was the mother of the bride, then most importantly to her she became the grandmother of my children. She doted on my boys Michael and Peter, babysitting often. Joan bought them their first suit then taught them to be respectful young men. When the children were babies she would often take them and disappear, teaching and loving on them.
We called her the baby-napper.
When my husband, Ken and I were thinking of adopting a daughter, she said, "there's always room in her heart to love one more!"
That is who Joan was, always finding room for one more.
She loved and doted on Theresa as much as the boys. Just this past fall she got to hold her first great-grandchild, Adelia and I saw that twinkle in her eyes once more ...
The baby-napper had returned.
My dad said she picked up strays, as he often referred to himself. Family and inclusiveness was important to her, no one was ever left out, even if she didn't agree with your politics, you knew you were always included with Joan.
One thing she always wanted to know was how my brothers were doing. She wanted me to have a close relationship with them because she knew that family was all you had, besides God in your life and that was important. As the years went on and my relationships got somewhat better with my brothers it made her happy because she wanted to me to always have family.
Her legacy is one of love, compassion and bringing people together.
May 2, 1930 ~ February 13, 2016