An Aching Heart

Our beautiful friend, Becky, passed away September 14th and our hearts ache from her loss. I alluded to this hurt, and to those of you we called to pray, we truly thank you. Those prayers were heard and certainly felt.

I cannot overstate what an integral part Becky played in Andy’s life as they grew up together, and I’m not even sure how to type what we’re feeling right now. It’s a combination of shock and pain…loss and longing.

Becky, I knew all about you before we even met. When I was dating Andy, I listened in awe as he described having you as a friend for his entire life. I don’t have any friends that I knew from in utero.

I wish I remembered exactly when I met you, probably, in good Elder tradition, a Thanksgiving or Christmas or some holiday that brought the family together. I remember being a little bit nervous, and (silly me) a little bit intimidated. I mean, I had this to think about:

You were Andy’s first kiss!

How quickly I realized you were so much more. You were a sister in the Elder family. Julie and Bob were so much more to you than a pseudo aunt and uncle. They were more like a second set of parents.

And, in true Becky fashion, you welcomed me into the extended family with wide open arms.

You spread that warm love to include my entire family. My Grandma specifically remembers that about you. You went out of your way to talk with her, to get to know her.

You gave us all reason to smile and share in your generous laughter.

Remember you wrapped our Christmas gift in about a million layers?

And the clothes you special ordered for Andy and I to use on our honeymoon?

Only a sister can buy such things.

And you are missed as a sister would be.

For a man raised without any biological sisters, my husband has an incredible respect for women. I know you helped shape him to be that man. I see your effects in my wonderful in-laws. You taught them how to love a daughter, and is some small way, I share in that. I benefit from that. Thank you.

You loved my daughters like only a real auntie could, showering them with love and gifts in every possible moment. And I think that’s what hurts the most. Knowing they’ll grow up with one less auntie to love on them and be proud of them and help raise them.

So, I try to take comfort in our Faith. The faith that says anyone can be a saint. And I know, to the core of my being, that my daughters have one more saint in heaven to intercede for them…to take their prayers and needs and whisper them in the ear of Jesus. That is the powerful and awesome gift you will give them, for the rest of their lives.

We know you couldn’t possibly be in a better place than you are now, but your absence still hurts. We know the ache will fade, but that doesn’t make it better now.

Your birthday is coming, October 31st, and I think it a fitting day to celebrate you. A fall day filled with leaves the color of your hair and happy children eagerly accepting presents and candy. We will light a candle for you this Halloween and every Halloween we can. Perhaps in this tradition, the yearly reminder of your smile and laughter, we can remember you and our children can catch a glimpse into your beautiful soul.

We love you Becky. We miss you. Pray for us.

Eternal rest grant unto her, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon her. May the souls of the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen.

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5 Responses to An Aching Heart

  1. Angela Maria Weinmuller says:

    Becky and her family shall remain in our daily Mass offerings. May God’s Divine Grace and Peace be with each and everyone of you.

  2. Debby Hanlen says:

    Beautifully said, Caitlin! Becky, Walt, Gale, and Sneja and all of their extended family remain in our thoughts and prayers. God bless you all.

  3. Margaret says:

    I’m so very, very sorry for your loss, my friends.

  4. Pingback: Flowers for Becky | T.O.T.E.

  5. Pingback: A Candle for Becky | T.O.T.E.

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