Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Grandma on my mind

My mom said it best the other day when she said that this is sacred time with my Grandma Fitz.  As much as it pains me to say, we are down to days with her.  There is so much I want to say to her and so much I want to say to other people about this amazing woman.  When she was diagnosed with Brain Cancer last year, I started writing down some thoughts about her.  What better time than now to share them....

Forever the optimist, when faced with a second form of cancer, here is what she had to say, "I've lived 85 years & I've had a blast!"  When many get a diagnosis like you did, they have instant regret about their life. Not you. You've said from the beginning that you've lived a great life and you were ready for whatever God had in store for you. To be honest, you lived more life than 3 people combined!

I've loved this song by One Republic since it came out.  The past year it has taken on greater meaning and made me think of my Grandma every time I hear it.  Click HERE. 

In one of our conversations about motherhood, here is the best advice you gave me about being present with my kids in midst of chaos or just a simple game of pretend:

"Do it. Make a memory. Experience the moment. Your kids will remember."

I do remember Grandma.  Here are some of my favorite photos.

8th Grade Graduation
Graduate School Graduation
80th Birthday
Christmas 2011 - When we announced we were pregnant with Eloise 
Eloise's Baby Shower
Whistling to babies from go!
Eloise's Baptism
Preston's Sprinkle
Holding 10 day old Preston just days before she got her cancer diagnosis
Whistling to Preston
Sharing your love of animals with Eloise
Thanksgiving 2015
Christmas 2015
Happy 85th Birthday Grandma!
Easter 2016

Celebrating July Birthdays 

Visiting Great Grandma - October 2016
When I asked your advice about what to tell Eloise when you are gone, without hesitation and with a smile on your face, you said, "tell her that I went to be with Jesus." I won't say that you lost your battle to cancer. We will say you surrendered yourself into the loving arms of God. I know you will be at peace and without sickness or pain but that's doesn't mean that we won't wish you were still here. Since we can't have you here, we will have to do the next best thing - live out your love to everyone we meet. Smile through pain and get back up every time we stumble. I will try to be everything to my family you have always been to me. It won't be easy though as your shoes are hard to walk in, your hiking boots are hard to climb in, and your skis are hard to ski on. I'm determined to be the kind, gentle, loving, passionate woman you showed me how to be.

You are love and generosity, mercy and forgiveness. You are kindness and patience, and Trefzger's apricot coffee cake and thumb print cookies on every holiday. You are the great story for every lull in a conversation. You are the push for so many people to be better, do better, and live better. You are homemade pumpkin bread and thanksgiving stuffing. You are comfort and home. Basically, you are everything we ever needed and don't want to let go of.

“I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what 
you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”      
-Maya Angelou
Here's the thing...I don't want to forget anything.  I don't want to forget one thing you said.  I don't want to forget one thing you did for me or my family.  I don't want to forget one thing we did together.  As hard as I may try, I know that over time I will.  I promise you though that I will never, ever forget how you made me feel - loved. 

Love you forever & always Grandma Fitz. 


  1. Beautifully written Mandy! I'm sure this post will be a great place to look back at memories and to share with Eloise and Preston as they grow. I've got your entire family in my thoughts. I'm sure you will all carry on her spirit!

  2. This is such a beautiful post. She seems like an incredible lady! I lost my grandma a year ago and I wish I had more photos (and her voice recorded). Cherish every minute!