At the funeral this week, people stood around saying what they remembered and appreciated about Mark. As I was thinking how nice it was that so many people had so many nice things to say about him, I also thought how sad it was that we often wait until people are gone to say those kinds of things about them. I don't want to wait until you are gone to tell you (and everybody else) what I remember/appreciate/love about you.
You have to be the most loving "people person" I know. You are not happy if EVERYBODY (and I do mean EVERYBODY) is not happy. You work to make me happy, Amanda happy, your family happy, my family happy, the people you work for happy, the people who work with you happy, our church family happy, teachers and people at school happy, the lady who cuts your hair happy, the person checking you out at the store happy...HAPPY, HAPPY, HAPPY. You always want to make everybody happy. Hey...you do a GREAT job at it.
You love Amanda Kay and you are a great Mommy. You always want to pick up something for her when you are out just to remind her she is loved. You work hard to help her look good at school like helping her dress up for special days, etc. You know everything she likes and dislikes. You help her be confident in who God made her to be. You do a GREAT job as a Mommy.
You have a BIG heart. You love people, you always want to help (even when you're helping 20 other people simultaneously) and you always want to give. Give your time, give your money, give your support. You are a GREAT giver.
You like to have fun. We both know on the spontaneity scale, you are more towards one end and I am toward the other. I'm not always (ok, not usually) as eager to jump into something new or on the spur of the moment as you are, but you sure are good at making memories. You're GREAT at making memories that will last a lifetime.
And I guess the one thing hardly anybody else knows about you, and probably the one thing I am most thankful for is the way you have adapted your life and made room for me. When people get married, they give up who they are as an individual and become one together. Some parts of that are easy, and others are really hard. You have to be one of the most adaptive, loving and giving people I have every known. In our marriage, I try to make sure that I am giving my fair share, but I know I cannot come anywhere near where you are in the area of adapting and changing to make "you" and "me" into "us". This certainly is not an excuse to quit changing on my part, but I have seen you do so many things to become a good wife to me. Sometimes my personality can get stuck in a rut, and too often I have the "strong" personality. You manage to stay the unique and special person God made you to be, yet you make changes to be what I desire in a wife. When I'm not being selfish, I see you struggle sometimes, but I never hear you complain. I don't know what can make one person love another so much to be what you are to me, but I thank God for you. Solomon said it right when he said "he who finds a wife finds a good thing". When I found you as a wife, I found a GREAT thing.
Please forgive me for not saying these things more often to you and to the people around me. If I should out-live you, I want other people to know the kinds of things I am going to say about you at your funeral because they've heard me saying them every day. After Christ, you are truly the GREATEST gift God has ever given me and I want you to know how much I love you.
You are the love of my life!