Mad for…Melinda

Common sense and a sense of humor are the same thing, moving at different speeds. A sense of humor is just common sense, dancing. (William James)

A native of Breese, Illinois and a graduate of Southern Illinois University, my old neighbor Melinda Brueggemann is a woman I would describe as articulate, sassy, and not just a little bit saucy too. Her defining features are her good sense of humor and her compassionate heart.

A mother of three (mostly) grown children, Bennett, Evan and Elana, she is also the wife of a truly hilarious human named Barry. These two are now and always have been tremendously supportive parents, so the Brueggemann kids really are blessed to have them as parents. Since I know their youngest, Elana, is a standout on the Depaul Women’s Volleyball team, I’d be willing to bet they’ve made their way to a number of Big East volleyball events this season.

I saw a refrigerator magnet this week that said, “Good sense of humor, dirty mind and beautiful heart. Deadly combination.” It made me laugh, and it definitely applies here, ha? Hopefully this will make her laugh and she won’t be offended it made me think of her! Mel definitely has a well-developed sense of humor, and I think it helps to balance her if I am honest. She’s also incredibly bright as well as beautiful, which you can see yourself above in the photo with her hubby!

Here’s the thing, though. When our mutual friend, Karen, was nearing the end of her very long struggle with cancer, it was Mel who reached out. I think she wanted to check on what I might know about Karen, but also her genuine desire was to make sure that the folks who she knew loved Karen were in the loop, praying and supporting in whatever ways were possible. We stayed in close contact during that time to make sure there was food for the family when that was needed and organized prayerful aid by the community at large. So, while her sense of humor is most definitely an effective escape valve for the tensions and pressures of life, don’t be mislead. Melinda is a character filled woman of God. She loves others by beautiful acts of service, offered genuinely and without need for recompense.

Melinda, today you are the victim of my daily shout out. I hope what you hear me saying is that I believe you make the world a better place by the way you care for and love all those in your path each day. You, Mel, are a quality human and we are all better off for having your sunshine add a certain brightness and smile to the area you inhabit. Keep on keeping on…and GO BLUE DEMONS!!

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