Well done. Those are words that I am confident that Mrs. Lynn heard as she crossed over into eternity a few days ago. “Well done, good & faithful servant” Matthew 25:21. Mrs. Lynn was so many things – she was a wife, a mother, a sister, daughter, and friend. She was also my childhood caregiver, my all time cake baker, the key to my first job & my Mom’s best friend. June 4, 2019 is the day God called Mrs. Lynn home & she left this world with her three beautiful girls standing around her bedside. She raised them well and they are all strong, capable women who are gonna miss their Momma like crazy but in her last days they assured her they would be okay & I think that’s probably what she needed to hear. She was so tired of fighting but she needed to know they were gonna be okay.
Mrs. Lynn was a part of my life for as long as I can remember. Our families go way back & because of that we are all family. Mrs. Lynn went to school with my Daddy and they graduated together in 1971. He escorted her on homecoming court because they were buds & then they each got superlatives – Mrs. Lynn was “best looking” (she was gorgeous!) & Daddy was “cutest” (he still is 🙂 I can remember sitting on the floor as a child at my Nanny’s house looking through old yearbooks and I always loved the pic of Daddy and Mrs. Lynn on the football field for Homecoming.
Mom & Mrs. Lynn knew each other in high school but didn’t become close friends until Mrs. Lynn married Mr. Randy who Mom thought of as a brother. Mom, her brother & parents were across the street neighbors to Mr. Randy, his brother Sterling, & Mrs. Louise and Mr. Randall. Weezie and Randall were some of my grandparent’s best friends. Some of my favorite childhood memories are playing in the their yard with Amber and Lacy and walking to the end of the driveway to either meet Mrs. Louise or one of the girls so that Ma-Ma and Weezie could swap their magazines. The good kind – The Star and the Enquirer:)
When Mrs. Lynn had her first child, Denise, my parents didn’t have kids yet so they loved Denise like she was their own. They kept her on the weekends when her parents were working and any other time they could get their hands on her. As Denise grew and all the other siblings came along we always said we thought Denise was actually my Mom’s kid and my sweet little sister, Megan belonged to Mrs. Lynn. See, Denise is a little salty like my Mom (and me) and Megan is the kindest, sweetest, purest little being just like Mrs. Lynn so we always joked about who belonged to who but if you have ever seen Denise then you know she is her Mom’s twin:)
Every day when my Mom went to work, I got to go to the Ussery house and stay with Mrs. Lynn and the girls. That meant lots of summer days eating breakfast bars, going to the pool, playing in the yard and watching our favorite shows. Mrs. Lynn loved Western movies and books and my Daddy does too so between my house and Mrs. Lynn’s house I watched all of the John Wayne movies and she and Daddy exchanged Louis L’Amour books like Rhody and Weezie exchanged the Star & Enquirer. I can still see the LL books in my head, they were ordered from Time Life or something and were these brown leather encyclopedia like books & they filled our house and Mrs. Lynn’s. Our favorite things to watch in Mrs. Lynn’s living room were “Little House on the Prairie” & Pollyanna. Oh, how we wore that movie out. I grew up & didn’t need childcare anymore but Mrs. Lynn was still a big part of my life. She helped me land my first job (shout out to the Exchange Bank crew), she baked & decorated our wedding cakes & then when I had kids she made countless birthday cakes & even a Mercer cake for Brad when he graduated.
All of that to say that Mrs. Lynn has always been a constant in my life & she my Mom have been best friends for the last 45+ years. They survived lots together – deaths of parents, in-laws, and friends, they raised their kids together and welcomed grandkids together. Mom retired in March and Mrs. Lynn was set to follow in May. They had big plans for their retirement years. I found myself today thinking how sad I was that Mrs. Lynn had worked her whole life & then died before she could enjoy her golden years or do all the things she and Mom had planned but then I immediately thought that the joy she is experiencing right now in eternity is far greater than anything we can imagine here on earth. But still, I wish our loved ones could live forever especially if they have reached the title of grandparent because by that point there are so many people that love them dearly. In my world if you reach the grandparent stage then that would be your ticket to live forever.
To know Mrs. Lynn was to love her. She was the kindest, most gentle person on the planet. She was a hard worker, she loved well & you never heard her say a bad word about anyone. She was quiet and reserved & loyal. As my Aunt Jane would say, she was a real jewel. Mrs. Lynn was one of a kind and her absence on this earth will leave a big hole. I am so glad that I got to speak those words to her and thank her for the impact her life had on mine. I am also thankful that I got to hold hands with her girls and my Mom around her bed and pray over her before she lef this world. I will cherish those moments forever. Tomorrow is Mrs. Lynn’s funeral and my Daddy and my husband are pallbearers. They are honored to be a part of her service & express one final act of love towards a lady who loved all her people so well.
The fragility of life literally takes my breath away. It is hard to understand how someone is here and things seem okay until suddenly they aren’t and then they are gone. I don’t imagine it is anything I will ever understand this side of eternity but I can trust in a God who is bigger than me and who ultimately has a good plan. I want to encourage you to tell your loved ones that you love them (as often as you can), apologize to who you need to apologize to, ask forgivenss or give forgivness & love hard because life is short and we are not promised tomorrow.
“You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.” Matthew 5:14-16 ESV
Mrs. Lynn, you were a bright light & you will forever be missed. Love you.