I’ve been avoiding you. All of you. I want to hide. I want to pretend like this past week wasn’t real. I wish it wasn’t, but it is…
She was my biggest fan… well… next to my mom of course. But you couldn’t tell where one of them ends and the other begins. She loved our story, she prayed for me daily and now she will watch it unfold from a higher place.
This was her last message to me:
You are their mommy today, tomorrow and for ever long that God gives you this title. I love you like my own and I am proud to say I know you.
My eyes fill with tears as I try to capture in one post all that she meant to me. It just isn’t possible.
This was my friend Judy. She was ushered into heaven one week ago and I still feel the sting of loss. She loved me big. I honestly thought I was her favorite… then as I gathered with everyone else in her life I realized, we ALL think we were her favorite.
Judy had a special way of making you feel like you were the most important person around. She loved unconditionally, unreservedly and unlike any other I have ever known. She always saw the good in me and called out of me things I couldn’t believe for myself.
She prayed faithfully. She loved my girls. She fought in the heavenlies and held on to hope when I didn’t have the strength to hold on for myself. She’s the first person my mom calls and quite possibly the most excited when she found out about our adoption.
I’ve always called her my other mother, because that is for sure the role she played in my life. She was there the day I was born. She picked up the pieces of my devastated brother who had begged for a brother and found out I was a girl. (sorry!) She loved me, crooked little legs and all. Unconditionally.
She has been at every major event in my life… except when I graduated college… but even I skipped that. When Daniel proposed to me at midnight on New Year’s Eve many years ago, her door was the one I knocked on at 1:00 am. And she screamed with excitement at this little girl that couldn’t wait to be married.
When I got married, she gave me one piece of advice: “never let the bed get cold.” So I immediately went on to Pottery Barn and ordered more bedding. I live in Florida now but I’ll be darned if I don’t have blankets and down comforters on my bed… even in the summer. Daniel keeps telling me that’s not what she meant… but I know it is. We stay warm.
She was a safe place, comfortable, welcoming and funny. We always laughed when we were together. If she couldn’t find my mom, she would call me and we would talk through all the possible places she might be. 9 times out of 10 it was just the shower.
When my sister called and told me I needed to come home, I couldn’t believe it. I couldn’t swallow the truth. All I could think is how hard it will be to celebrate the big things without her there. Our adoption is so close… but she won’t be here. It’s not just about me. My heart breaks for so many people that will feel the pain of that empty space at the table, at the party, at the office, at the doors of Wiregrass church, at the baby showers, the graduations, the weddings and at Labor Day.
She was so many things to so many people, it’s hard to believe one tiny little lady could have such a big impact on this world. At the funeral Amy listed all the names of Judy. I never knew we could call her Judy Booty! Seriously, how did I miss out on that!?!?!
But now we speak of her with her new name. Faithful, beautiful, bride of Christ. I know she is watching down on us… all of us. And if you have any doubts, I assure you she is taking care of business in heaven. Trust me, there is no resting. She has Jesus’ undivided attention now.
I don’t know what I was hoping to accomplish with this post…. except to honor that which is honorable… one special lady that has forever imprinted love on my life and the ones I love.
To all of you who were fortunate enough to know her, consider yourself blessed. For those of you who didn’t have the privilege of knowing her, rest in knowing that you have seen her fruit in my life.
My heart hurts at knowing there won’t be a comment from my Judy on this post, or any others. It won’t be the same. But I find comfort in knowing she is having a grand ol’ time running things in heaven. Once again, sorrow may last for the night and I can trust that joy will come again… one day.
Love you forever~