Goodbye Shirley

Tonight we celebrated Sissy’s 18th birthday and said farewell to Shirley. She is moving out of state to be closer to her family, but the little family she left behind will miss her very much.

For the better part of 10 years Shirley has been my daughter's care giver.

She taught her to care for herself, to clean her room and do dishes and laundry; took her shopping and ran errands.

She taught Sissy old timey gospel songs, like “The Great Speckled Bird.”

She shared with me her love for our Saviour and allowed me to share mine without ever once judging me or telling me she thought I was wrong. In Shirley’s heart there is room for anyone to love Jesus.

Once when we went to a baptism, Shirley shared with me her belief that Sissy does not require baptism. “When her time comes, she will go straight to the arms of Jesus.” I completely agree.

Her’s is a small inner city nondenominational church. Sissy has attended Vacation Bible School there every year. The people at Shirley's church have been loving and accepting of Sissy, genuinely glad to have have her participate. Sissy will attend this year like always, with one major exception. Shirley will not be there.

Another local Church holds a musical service once a month, Shirley and Sissy always go. They have a number they do together that is so sweet.

Once the Pastor asked Sissy what song she would like to do next, she asked for “Achy Breaky Heart” and he sang it for her. Later he wrote Christian lyrics to the tune for her and she danced with him in the aisle. “Who says Baptists don’t dance?” He laughed afterward.
My heart broke for them tonight watch as Sissy sobbed in Shirley's arms, finally realizing that she was going and this time was not coming back.
Sissy goes to camp on Sunday and when she comes back someone new will be trying to fill the place Shirley has left, but it will never be the same.

Nothing I can do, no gift I can give, can ever repay this woman, who has loved my child as her own.

Good bye Shirley.


1 Response to “Goodbye Shirley”

  1. 1 Laura June 10, 2006 at 1:51 pm

    What a sweet tribute to such a wonderful woman! It sounds like she has been such a big blessing over your life and your daughter’s. I’m so glad God brought you all together. He must have something new planned, a new season, for you three and while anticipation and anxiety sometimes go along with that, there is excitement and adventure to be had for each of you. I’ll be thinking of and praying for Sissy as she makes this transition.

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