Sunday, October 6, 2013

My Lola, My Idol

My dearest and my most favorite grandmother died on October 1st 2013 at the age of 91. It's the day we tried to prepare ourselves for but still couldn't grasp the unbearable thought. It still all hasn't sunk in yet. She died Tuesday morning in the hospital but before that, on Friday, she playfully pulled my pillow in the middle of the night and woke me up. On Saturday, she even asked the return date of my husband. Sunday, she went with us for a despedida party for one of our leaders in the community. She loved parties and was greeting everyone with her infectious smile. Monday morning, before I went off to work, she sent me kisses through her fragile hand. And Monday night, at the hospital, we told her we were going to come back and didn't know it was the last time we could kiss her warm and soft cheeks and tell her we love her. Everything happened too fast. However, we were not left regretful. We thank God for allowing us to care for and show my grandma how much we loved her every single day. She died peacefully in her sleep. She had a happy, full, and well-lived life. 

Eulogy for Lola:

I am Joselle and I am one of her 7 grand-daughters. 
Thank you for giving me the chance to speak in front of you today and share with you some few words to honor my Lola (grandmother) in behalf of her grandchildren. 

Actually words are not enough to describe my grandmother. 
To be honest, 2-3 minutes of honoring is too short as the memories we've shared were too many.   

But if I could sum up my grandma, I guess I would break it down to three things: 

Generous. My grandma is the most generous  and selfless person I know. 
Every dinner time, she would tell us with pride, over and over, stories of her past, her accomplishments, and it was truly inspiring. 
Her parents died at her early age thus as the eldest child, she took up the role of a mother and a father to her 6 younger siblings.
She made sure all of them finished school even if she had to sacrifice her own. 
She only finished 3rd year in college and chose to prioritize work to provide for her family.
My grandpa waited a long time until he got my grandma's hand cos her family came first before anything else.  
No doubt, she's also been generous to my family.
She unceasingly helped my mom financially in raising my sisters and I. 
One of her dreams and goals was to get us here in the US so we can have a comfortable life and so she filed a petition to get us here.
That took 16 years and we were all thankful to the Lord to be given the honor to give back everything she's done to us. Now, we all just pledged to be American citizens and we owe it to her. 
Thank you for teaching me the meaning of generosity and being responsible as an Ate (older sister).

Family oriented. Her family defined her existence.
She's at her happiest when she's surrounded by family.
She would all wait for us for dinner and welcome us with her pleasant smile when we arrive home from work or school.
She would do roll calls and would get disappointed when we don't come home early.
She would also always look for her brother and sisters and would be very happy everytime her siblings, relatives and friends pay her a visit. 
It's funny cos wherever she lived, whether in the Philippines, in New Jersey, or in Atlanta, there would always be family around. 
Until in her last days, she was and cared for by family. 
Nursing home was never an option.
There was a time when we were changing her diaper, she shyly uttered,
Sorry my dear if I was bothering you, and I replied, you deserved to be taken care of cos u were a good grandmother. 

Woman of faith. Each morning before I go off to work, I would see her with her prayer books and rosary. 
Sunday is her favorite day and happiest day of the week cos we would get together and would go to church altogether.  
When she was at the prime of her health, she would go to mass everyday.
Her faith was what made her into a beautiful and wonderful woman. 
My mom, myself, my sisters, my aunts and all of us would not become who we are today, if not because of her. 

You're my idol Lola for living well a full Christian life. Thank you Lola for inspiring me and leaving me with these legacies that I would forever keep in my heart. Our dear Lord, our Father, must be very delighted to welcome a saint in her kingdom. Till we meet each other again. I love you and I will miss you.

Alan, my husband's eulogy:

Lola Meding was the best grandmother-in-law one could ever wish for. Like Joselle said, she was the number 1 fan of our love team. I also heard she always asked Joselle when I would come back. I'm so sorry that I wasn't able to see her again. I wish I could have spoken with her one last time. Even if her body is now cold, I know that a part of her lives in Joselle and all of her siblings, children, and grandchildren. The moments that she would smile when we see eye to eye, I remember that similar smile in Joselle as well.


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