Lola passed away today.
I originally posted about this here. I hope you'll go look at that before reading the rest of this.
In our church every adult man who considers himself to be an active member is assigned to visit two or three, and sometimes more, specific people or families every month as a representative of the church. As you might imagine, sometimes very close and even lifetime friendships develop from these visits.
Approximately three years ago I received the assignment to visit an older couple who had just moved in. It was difficult at first because the gentleman was near completely deaf, and his wife (at age 79) still worked full time in retail giving here strange schedules and so she was often not there when we went to visit. I always looked forward to my visits and especially the times she was there. I couldn't believe the energy, vitality and joy in that dear woman and she treated us like we had been best friends for years.
In the original post, here, I told you about her being diagnosed with terminal cancer, but I didn't mention that she was told she would probably have only up to 6 months to live.
Thankfully the doctors were wrong and we've had 2 1/2 wonderful years to get to know her and become so close to her and her husband. They are like family.
My wife and I arrived at the hospital this evening to visit her when we ran into her husband in the main hallway and he told us that she had died about 1/2 hour before our arrival. Fortunately for her she had two extra years beyond the doctors diagnosis and during that time she had very little pain, even through the chemo treatments. She was full of vitality and had a smile on her face right up to the last couple weeks before she passed. When we saw her the day before yesterday she was on heavy medication but she tried to smile and even told her son, who was there with her, to tell us of a funny experience that had happened just a week before. She is a wonderful example of an exceptionally wonderful attitude right up to the end. Lola always brought happiness and a ray of sunshine whenever you were privileged to be with her. She was not afraid to die because she knew she would be with loved ones again and had a special place in Heaven.
We love you Lola, We'll miss you.