This is not a post I want to write. At all. I want to rewind a few days and recreate what has happened. I want to go back in time and say so many more things to someone who left their mark on my life.
But I can’t. So I sit here, in tears, and remember a woman who was more than most strive to be. I sit here and realize the pain that comes with loving and then loosing someone.
Let’s go back in time, about 16 to be exact. My oldest sister entered high school and met a woman who would change our families lives. You see my family isn’t the normal family and this teacher was not a normal teacher. My family, my sisters and I, create relationships with our professors. They aren’t just people who teach us knowledge but they are people who join us as we learn and grow and become more of who God created us to be. To be honest, the teacher doesn’t get a choice, it just happens. You learn the good, the bad and the ugly. You hear about God, about boys, about family and about life.
Now couple that with a woman who sought to bring out the best in you. She used experiences and opportunities to grow and teach not just knowledge. One more than one occasion she challenged me to stand up and be more than I thought I could be.
Her name was Susan Jernegan. And this morning she passed away from a brave fight with breast cancer.
Even just typing those words brings tears to my eyes and pain to my heart. This loving woman who gave so much is no longer here. I know where she is, she is with the One who loves her more than I. She is without pain and being told, “Well done, my good and faithful servant.”
Most people probably wouldn’t know this about her, and to be honest we never had that plain conversation of knowing she knew Jesus. But I knew, in the way that I knew she loved me. I knew, in the way she told me to be brave and follow Jesus. I knew in the way she spoke wisdom and truth and life into my life. I knew and I know where she is at.
There are so many more words and thoughts, there are thousands of stories that I could tell. But all I can bring myself to say right now is that a woman, dear to my heart, now resides in the arms of Jesus. She was faithful in all that she did, she went beyond and above, and now she is above and beyond the battle she fought so fearlessly.
Thank you Susan Jernegan for seeing more in me than I ever thought. Thank you for encouraging me to fly when all I knew was to walk. Thank you for selflessly giving of yourself but also showing me what it meant to fight. Thank you for the thoughts, the prayers, the words and the challenge. Thank you for being more than my teacher, more than a friend, more than a mentor but for truly being family.
You, my dear woman, will be missed more than you would have ever thought. Your legacy goes on. Now, rest in peace.