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From Grief to Gratitude: How My Grandmother's Passing Taught Me the Power of Faith (25 years later)

As the primary author of this site, you need to understand who I am as a person. I am sharing a personal story of faith, identity formation, and how these have shaped my life. This journey has been one filled with struggle and triumph; through it all, I remain passionate about helping others discover their potential in whatever way possible - whether this is through coaching or higher education.

Being genuine and vulnerable as an author is important because it allows you (the reader) to connect to my writing more meaningfully. By being honest and truthful, I can give you all a glimpse into my true thoughts and emotions, which builds trust. Psalm 139:23-24 reads, "Search me, O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts! And see if there be any grievous way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting!" This verse emphasizes that we should allow ourselves to be vulnerable with God so that He can search our hearts and guide us on a path of righteousness.

So here goes nothing…

My maternal grandmother (Arlene Marie Turnbull) had a radically independent spirit and never shied away from adventure. Before she was diagnosed with ovarian cancer and Alzheimer's in her mid-60s, nothing could stop her from seeing the world - she loved visiting national parks, particularly Mesa Verde, CO. While it pained her to lose so much of her independence as the diseases took over, I believe that what hurt most was having to rely on others for caretaking – something foreign to someone who had spent such a large part of their life exploring independently.

The day after she passed away, my grandmother visited me in a dream. She spoke with a poetic gentleness that seemed to calm my soul and fill me with peace; almost immediately after waking up, I wrote down every word she said that night. At the funeral service, my paternal grandmother recited them - and I believe everyone present drew comfort knowing how deeply beloved my grandmother had been in life and death alike. Those powerful words remain etched deep into my memory; they remind me not only of how strong-willed Grandma had been during adversity but also of the kind heart that still lives within us, regardless of circumstance or disease.

Here is what she said:

"There comes a time in every life with all that's left is hope… A silent time to gaze back and laugh at olden jokes…

A moment to rejoice in everything you've seen and to know that God is with you everywhere you'll be…

The day will come when all you've loved is lost, and a shadow will be your friend… For the hour will arrive when you know that it's the end.

A light will shine upon your face, yet you won't be afraid… For an angel will appear and guide you on your way.

You say goodbye to what you leave behind and wipe the silent tear… Side by side,you'll walk in peace to the land of no fear."

Thank you for reading ♥️

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