In her name….

Angels Stadium Research GrantFinally, after months of preparation, 10 INTENSE weeks, the recovery, and more waiting, we had our night at Angels Stadium where the top fund-raisers were honored, and more importantly, the grants we worked so hard for, were awarded. It was a delightful surprise to hear, over the loud speaker, “…a research grant for Hodgkin’s Lymphoma in the name of Elizabeth Danielle Jenkins…”. I am grateful for those who were able to be there to share that moment with me; mommy, Karen, Howard and Sherry, Taite and Jonathan, Mark, and Stacy and Phil. Paperwork will still come and I’m hoping the research facility is close enough to visit/tour/meet the researchers.

This would not have been possible without the dedication of my team, my friends… So I’d like to say thank you again, from the bottom of my heart, for your support and commitment. My family, Sean, Mommy, Lissa, and my friends, Rose, Diane, Mark, Tracy, Kate, Gina Marie, Crysty, and Paula, and those who helped signifcantly in other ways; Jody & John, Marianne, Christy, Taite, Stacy & Phil, Erin & Ian, Martha… I’m sure I’m missing some. And EVERY single, solitary person who donated ~ Thank you!

Grief is a journey. The goal, for me, is to let go of her death, but hold onto her life. It’s a slow process. I am not the same soul I once was. You cannot expect out of me what I embodied in the past for that part of me no longer exists. I can’t believe we’re approaching 3 years. They say the 1st year is the hardest, but it’s not. It is in a different way (the gut-wrenching rawness); all the firsts, but you’re still somewhat numb and in shock, and then, there’s no magic button the day after that 1st angelversary. You wake up and not only are they still gone, but you miss them just as much. The 2nd and 3rd year is when reality sets in and you have to really come to grips with the fact that this is real and she’s not coming back. In hanging onto her life, I am working on focusing on the gift she was; that we were blessed for 32 (almost 33) years, for every moment we got with her, for all the lessons she taught us, her humor (OMG, she was funny), her wit, her compassion, acceptance, zest for life, the way she loved me (you, anyone she loved), her hugs, the way she knew me. She was my baby sister but she was wise and taught me many things. I will miss her every second of every day until I am with her, but I will live my life to it’s fullest to honor her. She will live through me; through each one of us who loved her so deeply.

Thank you for being part of this amazing tribute to/for my beautiful baby sister, Elizabeth Danielle.

…Shellee/a.k.a. Sissy


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