Monday, July 23, 2007
It Was WONDERFUL!!!!!
I wish I had the time to respond to each and every one of you all. Your outpouring of love, sympathy, support, and prayers is incredible. Who knew one special little girl could touch and inspire so many?? I've read stories of butterflies, lilies and frogs. Of finding wonder in unexpected places. Of people putting on their fanciest of Hannah duds to join in a celebration of life for one absolutely amazing little girl.
As a mom, I'm greedy for my children. I want for everyone to love them as much as I do, to be inspired by them as much as I am. From all the comments I can tell so many of you have stayed to explore and get to know my sweet Monkey and have fallen under her spell. What a remarkable legacy that is.
As you all know, I was absolutely dreading today. Dreading it. We some pretty amazing things planned but who knew how it would go off, it was to be so different from any funeral ever. That, and it wasn't a funeral but a celebration. And, boy was it.
I worried no one would come in their Fancy Hannah clothes. What a waste of anxiety. I've never seen such glitz, glitter and glam. There were trails of feathers from molting feather boas leading from room to room. There were baskets of Mardi Gras beads waiting at the door for guests who arrived under dressed. There were bowers and bowers of flowers, many of them LOADED with sunflowers and lilies. And, who knew you could spray sparkles on flowers? Hannah would be so tickled!
I'm not quite sure how many people were there, let's just say it was standing room only. Someone put the estimate at 500+, but who knows. So many people touched by one small yet precocious child, coming to send her off. There were balloons, photos, a DJ (yes, a DJ!) and laughter.
I had promised myself, for Hannah, I would make it through the service without completely losing it . Amazingly enough, I didn't! There were many small children there and it was fantastic. I read "Fancy Nancy" and a couple of them came up close so they were sitting at my feet as I read so they could see the pictures. In fact, as one of the little girls was leaving, she said to me, "Thank you for inviting me to Hannah's party." Wasn't that just perfect?
I had family drive in from Blacksburg for the day (TONS of 'em). Mom had friends drive in from NC and Blacksburg for the day (again, TONS of 'em). There were so many gathered in love and fellowship I thought my heart would burst. Fred and Carol did a lovely job with the service and the best part was the butterfly release. It was the most glorious thing I have been privileged to witness in years. We had 24 butterflies and I gave them all out to family and watched in awe as they were released. They flittered and fluttered about, lighting here and there, many of them on people. Hannah would have LOVED it all!
I tried very hard to greet everyone I could, but there were just so many I'm afraid I missed quite a few. I'm so sorry for that. I did however have an opportunity to finally meet Ruhiyyih. It was so wonderful! I knew her the moment I saw her and was actually quite anxious for her to arrive. :o) I have to confess, as we were leaving, I saw her again and found her talking on the phone, and I'm afraid I very rudely interrupted her phone call to her mother, Bonita. I'm so sorry about that but it was such a pleasure to speak with her.
I know I'm very giddy right now, running on nothing but grit and exhaustion, but my spirits are so incredibly buoyed by the beauty of the day.
My friends, Chuck and Erik, put together the most most beautiful slide show of Hannah. You can access it here: http://www.westcraigenterprises.com/test/images/hannah_0003.wmv , but be sure to have tissues handy. A note, if you are using Firefox or another browser, this will only work in Internet Explorer--so sorry. You will need to copy and paste the link into IE.
Thank you all for simply everything and please continue to keep us in your thoughts and prayers because I know I'm bound to crash and burn before you know it.
P.S. This evening, as I was walking out some friends, I happened to spy the sweetest pot of daisies sitting on the castle rocks around our flowerbeds. That in and of itself is interesting and mysterious as no one seems to know where the came from. More importantly, there was a toad sitting on the sidewalk gazing up at those daisies. She's all around us, my friends, isn't she? :o)