My husband and I have been together for almost twelve years.  Just seems kind of crazy that it is possible that it has been that long.

Over the years I have heard many stories from his youth, many of which contain times with his Nana, and with her mother Big Nana.  They all lived in the neighborhood that my husband grew up in.  All within shouting distance of each other.  I wish that I could have met the infamous Big Nana, she died about fifteen years before my husband and I met, but I am so pleased that I was able to meet his Nana.  One of the sweetest women I have ever had the pleasure to meet.

Unfortunately, by the time that he and I got together, Nana was a shut in.  She, for the most part, was confined to her chair.  She had help that came in, and she was still married to her second husband, who seemed to take care of her. 

I met Nana the day after Robin proposed to me.  She made me kneel down so that she could look at my face, told me that I was the one her Grandson had been waiting for.  Gave her blessing on our marriage and said a prayer for us.  At the same time she met Mack.  She told her she was a beautiful girl, that my husband would be a wonderful father to her, and told her that she loved her as one of her great-grandchildren.

This was in October of 2000.  Nana was too sick to come to our wedding.  We stopped by a few days later, and showed her photos.  This became what we did with Nana.  An event would happen, we would stop by after it happened and tell her about it. 

The Christmas of 2002, there was a huge Christmas Eve gathering at Nana’s house.  Her tiny house was busting at the seams with people, food and this joy that just radiated off of Nana.  To have all her children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, nieces and nephews in one place, she was in heaven.  Her chair was set in the center of the room so she could see everyone.  She encouraged everyone to “Go eat!” which is just something that she always did. 

Before it was time to head home, and put sleepy Mackenzie to bed, Nana passed out our gifts.  I really had not anticipated receiving anything, but it is something I cherish so much that I carry it with me everywhere I go, I have for the last nine years. 

Nana's prayer for me...

Nana handed each one of us an envelope.  Told us to read them before we went to bed that night, and to read them when we felt we needed her.

This is what it says:

For yourself, loved ones and all who need God’s help, Pray with us:

The light of God surrounds us;

The love of God enfolds us;

The power of God protects us;

The presence os God watches over us.

Whenever we are, God is!

“Bless you,”


Nana & Grandpa

Have a good day.

Each of the letters stated a different prayer that Nana had written for each of us.  She passed out about 35 or 40 envelopes on this Christmas Eve night.  I can only begin to imagine how long it took for her to write them all out.  I can only imagine how hard it was with the arthritis in her hands so bad at this point. 

I have received many gifts over the years.  Some great.  Some not so much.  This honestly, is one that I treasure above almost all others.

This was a holiday that I will never forget.  It was the one and only time that we had a holiday at Nana’s house.  Shortly after Christmas, Nana took a turn.  She was put in a nursing home.  At the time, it was supposed to be short-term, but she passed just a few months later, in March of 2003.

With all the running around, shopping, wrapping, and baking and other Christmas stuff that I have been doing.  Changes in my work, changes in my husband’s work, I needed Nana’s little prayer today.  It was still there tucked into my wallet, under a photo of my husband and I on our wedding day, and behind a photo of my own Nana.  It’s there for when I need it.  For when I have had a bad day, and just need a little reminder that all the little crap I get stressed out about is what it is.  Little crap. 

Someone was thinking of me and wrote that lovely prayer.


2 Comments on “Nanas”

  1. Monika says:

    That’s just beautiful.

  2. Jen says:

    Oh, how lovely. Just wonderful. Thank you for sharing.

I like thoughtful comments!

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