Finish Strong

I recently experienced the death of a friend, Sissy Tolbert. This woman was so incredible and unique!  When I heard the news of her death, of course I started reminiscing about her and the different times we shared.

One of my  favorite memories of Sissy was at a shower.  I can't remember if it was a wedding shower, or a baby shower, or even who it was for.  What I do remember was when I arrived, Sissy grabbed me & said, "You've got to help me!"  She led me to the bathroom. I couldn't imagine what in the world she wanted me to help her with in the bathroom!  She said, "The hole in one of my ears has grown shut & I need you to poke this earring through!"  I refused!!!!  She said, "No, you HAVE to!  I can't wear one earring!" I kept arguing with her, but she persisted (typical Sissy). Finally I agreed to TRY!  So I proceeded to attempt to push that earring through flesh!  My stomach was starting to churn....I said, "Sissy, I just can't!!!!  I'll hurt you!"  But she kept insisting...reminding me that this was nothing compared to what she had been through in her lifetime.

You might be wondering what she'd been through. Well....for years Sissy had major health problems.  She endured breast cancer, lung failure, a kidney transplant, & more dialysis than beads thrown at Mardi Gras! She was on her death bed numerous times, but after she rebounded, she'd say, "I'm back!"  And the doctors would be in disbelief! She was stubbornly resilient, because she was a fighter and loved life.

But back to my story.  As I attempted to overcome my queasiness , Sissy and I kept bantering, and we got the giggles! She said, "Now I've peed my pants!"  I don't know if she actually did....but of course that just made me laugh more!  I eventually re-pierced her ear and we emerged!

That's another thing I'll remember and love about Sissy.  She could make ANY situation funny!  She was always smiling, cutting jokes, making everyone around her joyful.  That's because  Sissy was joy personified! Even though she had the best sense of humor of anyone I knew, she had faith as strong as the breath of a cigarette smoking coffee drinker!  Most people who had to over-come as much as Sissy did, could easily blame God, ask "Why me?", give up, or lose their faith.  Sissy's faith only became stronger through each trial!  

Sissy was so loved, that the recording of her service had more views than the funeral home had ever experienced!  I'm sure that doesn't surprise anyone who knew her....she left that kind of impression on everyone she encountered!

One of Sissy's best qualities....in my opinion....was her willingness to accept help.  She asked for help when she needed it.  She graciously & thankfully took help when it was offered to her.  She was not too proud!!!!

Do you want to finish this race strong, like Sissy did?  We have another quarter of the year left.  How do you want to complete it?