“And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.” Revelation 21:3-4
“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Philippians 4:13
Remembering my sweet girl today. Six years have come and gone since Shelly left us for Heaven. What a traumatic day it was. The pain was indescribable, as was the 17.5 months of her battle with pancreatic cancer. Even to this day, my heart aches for the pain she went through. Yet, she put forth tremendous effort to remain positive and happy. I’ve never seen anything quite like it.
Shelly was strong—a real fighter. She depended on her faith and Jesus to get her through. And He did! No, we didn’t like the circumstances, but stayed close by Shelly’s side because there’s no other place we’d rather have been.
Once, when she was nearing the end, I had left Shelly’s house for the day and hadn’t been home long before she called me asking if I was going to come back to her house. I asked her what she needed and she said, “Nothing, I just want a hug.” To be sure, I went back for that hug! That was my girl. Always so full of love for others.
Shelly was one of the most loving people I know. She went through a lot of physical and emotional pain while she was here on earth. But through it all, she stayed strong and loved others in a remarkable way. I’ve said it time and again, but she loved her children and bonus daughter with all of her heart. She loved all of her family members with a heaping measure of unconditional love.
I will always remember the lessons Shelly taught me about forgiving others who had wronged her. And I hope that I’m honoring that very thing in my daily life. In dying, she taught me many things about how to live; things that I will always hold close in my heart.
Today, even though the ache of her absence is still present, I’m comforted to know where Shelly is and that her surroundings do not compare to the most beautiful places on earth. Yet, we continue to mourn our temporary separation with Shelly in various ways. Moving on is the only way forward and that is what we do daily. She would have it no other way. She once told me that we’d all be over the loss in 5 years. I guess she had read that somewhere. Yes, it does get more manageable and life goes on. However, I’m here to tell you that line of thinking isn’t true, for I will always mourn the greatest loss a mother could ever experience. My heart will never be the same as it was before she died. But the Good News is that I have HOPE, and therein lies the difference! I am not like those who have no HOPE.
God has been so good to us these last six years. I thank Him for loving us unconditionally and for showering us with so many wonderful blessings. They don’t take Shelly’s place, rather give us a perspective that He does indeed restore the years the locusts have eaten. How wonderful it is that her presence will always be felt deep inside our hearts.
This morning I thought maybe I’d not write anything this year, but the urge to write is still stronger than not. So I will keep Shelly’s memory alive as best I can. Sharing who she was and the impact she had on all of us is too good to keep to myself. I pray for all of Shelly’s family today. May the love she gave each one, give them courage and determination to carry on in ways specific only to them. We are beyond blessed to call her ours.
Today, I honor Shelly with all of my heart. Love and miss you so much, precious daughter. Until we meet again in that land where we’ll never grow old, or sick, or tired, I will continue to love those you loved and strive to be a light in the darkness until my race on earth is over!💜✝️
In Memory of Shelly Rena Forston
May 26-1967 – November 13, 2016
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