Gray, wiry hair pulled back behind a headband wrapping around her frail crown.
Eyes peeking behind glasses that help her see- see her daughter, her grand-babies, and me, one of her 16 great-grandchildren.
Sixteen of us. I'm one of sixteen.
One of sixteen who knows that specific, wobbling voice she has. One of sixteen who has listened to her stories, has heard her struggles, and knows her heart.
I know her smell. It's like the CoverGirl brand of blush.
I remember spending the night at her house, admiring her giant pantry.
I can hear her stories in my mind, the ones about growing up poor, about taking in the baby with no home, about trusting Jesus with all her heart.
"Is she your inspiration?" the boy asks me.
She's a flawed old woman with years of life hanging plainly from her shoulders. No doubt she's told some lies, broken hearts, and made a wrong decision.
Haven't we all?
But I bet she's saved a life or two, with her smile, a timely pat on the back, a kiss on the forehead, or an "it's gonna be alright, sha."
I bet she's helped friends out of many-a pickles.
I bet she's prayed a thousand prayers.
"Is she your inspiration?"
I don't think I would have dubbed her this title before he asked the question, but as I sit and watch her hold the baby on her lap with the little bit of strength she has left, my answer is this:
She is quite the inspiration.
Because of knowing her, I am inspired to love and love and love until there is no love left.
To love in the selfless way.
To love and then love some more.
To trust Love again even when love lets you down.
To hold on when Jesus says to hold on, and not let go till he says so.
She has been, is, and will be remembered as inspiring.
Her name is Evelyn.
Evelyn loved hard.
Here's to you, Granny.
You're my inspiration.