My Reasons

My Reasons

This Is Where It All Begins

This Is Where It All Begins

Tuesday, June 3, 2014


I have an aunt, he name is Annette Hanks McMinn.  There are four girls in my mom's family.  My mom is the youngest, Annette is the oldest.  No brothers.

I grew up living just down the street from Annette and her family.  We even lived with them a couple times in between moves and our house being built.

Annette taught me piano for several years, and laid the groundwork for my piano skills and the love I have for music.

Annette is the one who walked into my gymnastics practice to tell me that my little sister, Kelsey, had been born, and she drove me to the hospital to see her.  Annette picked me up and dropped me off numerous places during my mom's pregnancy and after my sister was born.  She was always fun to talk to, and she genuinely cared about me and what I was up to.

Annette let me do small jobs for her, and then gave me money and drove me to the store, so I could buy my new baby sister a little stuffed duck.

Annette is a big example of grace, humility and charity.

She is the one who sewed the brides maid dresses for my wedding.

She got me to eat hot dogs as a kid, because she made them "her secret way."

Annette had a very busy husband, with a lot of responsibility with his callings in our church, yet Annette was always there, gracefully beside him, asking people how they were doing, serving, and being a sweet and humble example of supporting her husband and loving the people they served.

Since I have been older, it seems that every time I have seen Annette, she has known all about me and my family, has asked questions all about us, and is usually on her way to do something for someone, give something to someone, and just dropping by to say hello, because she cares. 

Annette was diagnosed with cancer about 2 and 1/2 years ago, and she fought such a hard and admirable battle.  I never heard her complain. 

She was nauseous from chemo, when I was nauseous from pregnancy. 
She was fatigued from cancer, while I have been fatigued with vitamin deficiencies and sugar lows.  She has had scary moments of uncertainty over and over again at her doctors office.  I have had scary moments of uncertainty with this baby and pregnancy at my doctors office.
During the times I have been frustrated, complained and cried, I have though of Annette, up there in Pocatello, feeling the same pains, but greatly multiplied, gracefully handling it and staying strong.  Her end result was most likely death, mine was getting a baby.
She gave me a lot of determination to handle things better and to be more graceful about it, like her.

When she lost her hair, she did so with grace and dignity. She didn't shy away from it, and didn't let it pull her down.
She made the most of her time when she felt well, and when she wasn't well, she was planning on how best to utilize the next time she would be well.  Always thinking about what she could be doing for her family, and for others.

Annette passed away yesterday.  Heaven gained such a valiant spirit, but Earth lost a true treasure.

My family and I will be heading to Pocatello for her funeral this weekend.  I am happy to be able to honor her and her amazing life, but so saddened to say goodbye to such a valiant, strong, and virtuous woman in my life.

Aunt Annette and Uncle Glenn

As I think about what her husband and 5 children must be going through right now, along with my mother and her other sisters, I am so grateful yet again for the Gospel in our lives.  I am so grateful that we all have the knowledge truth that families are eternal, that we will all be together again, and that this is not a goodbye, it is until we meet again.

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