Monday, May 28, 2012

Open Letter to my Cousin

My sweet Ellie- I was up most of the night again pounding the throne of heaven for you. I hope you know how many people are praying diligently for you and your whole family day and night.

As I lay awake last night, I couldn't help thinking just about you. About your blinding smile and how your whole life you have always put others above yourself.

When we were small children the tornado sirens went off once while I was at your house. Erin and I (of course) were crouching in the hallway in fear and you just put your arms around us and comforted us.

I was the idiot who fell off of the bleachers at your Jr. High basketball game and they had to stop the game to check on your dorky cousin laying on the floor. You couldn't ever go back into the game because you were so worried about me.

I called you the night before I had to make my decision on where to go to college. I am sure you were exhausted, but you stayed on the phone with me nearly 2 hours weighing all of the consequences and praying with me over the decision.

The night before I delivered Bennett and was in the hospital nervous as could be, you bounded into the hospital room with your Mom full of joy and life and your excitement calmed my nerves and comforted me.

And who else but you would be so upset that you had to miss my baby shower because we wouldn't let you drive an hour and a half in a monsoon with tornado sirens going off? You didn't give a thought about your safety on the road but instead were thinking of someone else.

Every time I pray for you, I am flooded with these memories and so many more. Always comparing Christmas presents after we opened them, playing colored eggs and spider in Grandmom's pool, you kicking my tail in friendly games of tennis, beach trips, dancing to Whitney Houston tapes, spending weekends at Lisa's house in college, trying to help Erin get to the bathroom in her huge wedding dress and all three of us laughing ourselves silly, you driving all the way from Birmingham just to be at Rob's farewell concert at Frazer, wedding weekends, the births of our babies, long breakfasts at Starbucks, and sitting and holding your hand while you went through chemo.

And actually as I think about it, as you were getting your chemo you were more concerned about your friend who had driven you there who had to sit in the waiting room all day than you were about yourself. That is so you, my Elliot.

And even just last week in your hospital room, your eyes lit up when you saw your visitors and the sweet way you would say, "Hey!" when you saw Erin just reminded me of your amazing ability to love others.

And as I thought about you and how you have lived your life so selflessly I was struck by two things. 1. You are so much like our beloved Grandmother. 2. What an honor it is now for your friends and family to put you first and pray for you! 

We're never giving up hope! We believe in miracles! And I am amazed at how many people you have pointed to Christ even in your suffering. My admiration for you knows no limit. I hope that even as I type this your body is getting the rest it needs so you can find the strength to keep fighting, just like you have always done.

Exodus 14:14 "The Lord will fight for you.You only need to be still."


Laura Forman said...

I am in tears...that was a beautiful letter written to Elliot. I am so thankful that you had the priveledge to have such an amazing relationship with Elliot and Erin. What a blessing! Praying for you as you grieve the lost of your precious friend and cousin. May God's peace surround you right now!

Mary Beth said...

I am so glad u wrote this. I am a virtual stranger to you.. But elliot and I are a few degrees separated and I never had the chance to meet her though I have loved her through prayer. This is such a beautiful tribute to her.. I ache for your loss.