Submitted by Emmy Pontz

A little over one year ago, we embarked on our first family vacation since my father’s illness at a little cabin on the West Bay of Traverse City. It was the first event that truly embodied our theme for that year, “New Heart, New Life.” My mom, as many of you who had the privilege to know her can probably guess, was thrilled. In fact, she seemed to have forgotten that Abby and I, 19 and 22 respectively, were too old for beach toys.

Mind you, I am talking about sandcastle molds and mini shovels built for someone who was five. However, that was the epitome of my mother. She put her absolute all into A year after her death, we, her family and her community, are still reeling over her sudden departure from our world. Nothing is as it once was. Holidays, birthdays and other common events have taken on a new form. Those of you who have lost someone who was a paramount figure in your life understand the term, “new normal.” Our lives are forever changed after Angelin, “our all,” left us.

Let me leave you with one last vision of my mom. In fact, when I am missing her the most, it is the vision that I allow to surface. During that same family vacation, we decided one night to try our hand at go-cart racing. (I am laughing now as I write this.)

We discovered that mom drove a go-cart exactly like she drove her car. Two hands on the wheel, sitting straight up and slow. Each time that we lapped her, and there were many, she had her mouth wide open laughing and her eyes were alive.

Today, as we are heavy with sadness, I challenge us to come alive. Let’s live our lives as she always did; mouth wide with laughter and eyes sparkling with life. Let’s give our all for a woman who was and is Our All.