The loss of someone close brings forth an overwhelming wave of grief, sadness, and a profound sense of emptiness among those who cherished that person. Even when the understanding that the departed soul has found solace in Heaven prevails, the prevailing emotions remain rooted in sorrow.
As I contemplate the passing of Juanita yesterday, a cherished member of our family and the mother of my son-in-law, a mix of sorrow and tranquility envelops me. Despite the deep sorrow, there is a profound peace in looking at this photograph that immortalizes her essence and recognizes her indelible impact on everyone fortunate enough to know her.
Due to her health struggles, Juanita couldn't physically attend Emmanuel and Dustin's wedding. However, her absence was compensated by reading a letter she penned for Dustin and Emmanuel—a letter that echoed her boundless love and wisdom. Her grace extended beyond words; even in moments of physical discomfort, her face radiated warmth through a perpetual smile accompanied by words of kindness and care. It's evident that these virtues have been passed on to my son-in-law, Emmanuel, and I am sure that her spirit of love, peace, and joy will live on through him.
Our last shared moments unfolded on Christmas Eve, captured in the photo below. Despite her ailing health, Juanita persevered through the night, engaging in festivities and culminating the evening by lighting the candle for baby Jesus—a cherished family tradition. Witnessing her resilience and unwavering faith in Jesus Christ, even in the face of illness, was truly awe-inspiring. She faced her mortality with unwavering certainty, knowing her destination and to whom she belonged.
Reflecting on Juanita's life, I find myself yearning to emulate her strength and compassion during my own trials. Whether confronted with sickness, challenges, or triumphs, I desire to navigate life with the same grace she exhibited. She is my hero, and I aspire for all of us to honor her memory by embracing an unwavering faith in Jesus Christ, her Lord and Savior—and mine as well.
We love you, Juanita (Wife, Mother, Grandmother, Friend, and Daughter of our beloved God).