This is my mother-in-law after she suffered her first stroke. The stroke that doctors said she’d never recover from but she did. Not fully mind you but her strong will and determination graduated her from a rehabilitation nursing facility and into assisted living, where she celebrated her 90th birthday. It’s also where she shared her 70th wedding Anniversary with her beloved among family and friends.
Until…another stroke, and another robbed her from her mind and body. She was forced to live out the rest of her life laid up in a bed in a nursing home. That was until Monday, when she waved the white flag and moved on to the other side where she’s dancing once again in the arms of her beloved (Unbeknown to her, he passed at 95 over a year ago).
I didn’t have the pleasure of knowing my mother-in-law for a long time but the amount of time we did have will always be cherished. She was a force to be reckoned with and despite her small build, her exuberant personality made her the largest person in the room. She was kind, generous, witty, intelligent, a devout Catholic, and loved her family more than anything in the world.
At 94, my mother-in-law had a full life and remained optimistic up until the very end. She will be missed but we know that she is in a much better place than where she was for the last few years. We will be celebrating her life in the next couple of days, sharing some laughs and I’m sure some tears.
Today I’m sharing a small part of her with you. She was noted for her “Stewed Apples” and her family, especially mine, always looked forward to them on visits to the farm house. I never even imagined trying to make them myself as I figured it was not only time laboring but I’d never be able to duplicate their goodness. Well, come to find out…they are really very easy. The flavor is there too although like all food that becomes nostalgia to us, it always better when momma makes it.
Until we see you again, we will continue to remember you in life and apples.
Gloria Bergin Mendenhall
November 24, 1921 – December 14, 2015