I realize many people only know of Linda since she has been battling medical crisis. I want to introduce you to the sister I have had the privilege to know and love so many years.
Linda is the 9th child in our brood of 15 children - she is one of 6 "girls". Linda was a fun-loving "big sister" to me and matured super fast to be the "right-hand" of our mom's after our older sisters left home.
She was married in 1979. In the years that followed, she had 3 children (let me add extremely healthy babies - weighing in at 10.3 (Jake/1981), 9.4 (Abby/1982) and 11.11 (Kari/1984)).
In 1992, she was divorced and faced the challenges of being a single-parent.
She was an incredible, hardworking, relentless mother; she held down three part-time jobs so she could best raise her children as a single mom…she had a paper route, a card stocking position, and owned a house cleaning business – she specifically chose these types of jobs so she could have the flexibility to get her three kids off to school as well as be home when they returned from school.
She proudly saw each of her children graduate from HS and then prepared them to head off to college.
Later, she attended college herself and got an AA degree.
She also has had the experience of watching each of her wonderful children marry equally wonderful spouses.
HAPPILY, she welcomed all seven of her grandchildren with special “nana love”.
Okay, I can go on and on with more of Linda's incredible story; I will add just one more thing, did you know that Linda shed over 150 pounds on her own, naturally, through a disciplined diet and exercise program?
I hope that we all reflect that Linda is more than a patient in a hospital gown – she is much stronger than many of us in many ways.