Monday, October 13, 2008

Blue Blue Blue

I'm sad tonight.

I just received word that my great aunt is failing fast. Poor Aunt Susie.

She is the last of that generation. When she passes, the aged will be - I suppose they are - my mother's brothers and sister and her cousins.

And then it will be me.

Death is hard and we don't do it well in this country. We don't honor it or accept it as a part of life. We fight it and flail against it. It seems to me we act like it's a dirty bad thing that means someone has done something wrong.

Three days to mourn and then get back to work. What is up with that?

All we do is grow old, or be in a car wreck or a war or do something perfectly normal and there you are, choking on a pickle. And death finds you and takes you, whether you are ready to go or not.

Tomorrow is my parents' wedding anniversary. It is also the anniversary of my first date with my husband. The former ended tragically, with my mother passing away of pancreatic cancer at the age of 56. She was only days away from divorcing my father when she moved on to the other side. Their last 10 years of marriage were bitter and fraught with angst. I have always thought the stress of it added to her early grave.

Aunt Susie is my mother's aunt, my grandmother's sister. When I visit with her I always think of my mother, who I guess will be waiting to greet Aunt Susie when her times comes.

I suppose it is natural then for me to be thinking of my mother tonight, too.

But I don't want to think morose thoughts, not when I still need to write a column for the paper, and it needs to be something... well, not morose.

So here is my happy thought:

I am so thankful for my husband, who 26 years ago was a single fellow and completely unaware that he was about to meet me and so have his life turned upside down and backwards.

He is such a wonderful man. It brightens my mood just to think of him. He is warm and sweet, caring and kind. And strong and sturdy and everything any princess could ever want in a shining white knight.

I am so grateful.


  1. Happy Anniversary of your first date with your husband. What a gift to have such a good marriage. Sorry for the sad news. I hope that she is not having to feel pain. Peace and serenity to you and yours. I will be hoping that many sweet memories of your time with your aunt and mother will pop into your mind this evening.

  2. I'm so sorry about your Aunt Susie. I've lost so many beloved ones in the past few years, so I know how hard it is. And it never seems to get any easier. I do hope that the good memories you have of your Aunt Susie and your mother give you comfort. As well as your blessedness in having a husband that loves you so....

  3. Sorry to hear about your Aunt's failing health. It's always sobering when we realize that we're now the "older generation"'s always interesting to ponder our lives and the lives of others...and it's always bittersweet to recall the times shared. There's a lecture series in progress this month at the Floyd library re death and dying. I missed the first one, but plan on attending tonight's lecture. It is a topic our culture needs to get more comfortable with!

  4. I'm so sorry about your aunt Susie. You speak of her often and I feel like I know her a bit. It's hard to face being the generation that is "on top". I am dreading that time when my parents go. But I think it is so natural to feel that way. It's a great sign when you can find something so positive in all your loss with your husband's love and caring. You are truly blessed to have him.

  5. I'm sending you a virtual hug. You are so right when you say "death is hard and we don't do it well in this country." The loss of a loved one, whether they be human or animal, is always hard. I don't know that we should aspire to "do it well", though. When I lost my Mother, I thought I was prepared. I wasn't - not at all. I didn't "do it well" at all and I'm not ashamed of that. But losing her made me a better person, for I can now feel the pain of another's loss so much better. I know that you will cherish your memories of Aunt Susie and will be astonished at the events that trigger fond memories of her in the future. Be nice to yourself and remember that every person deals with grief in their own way and on their own timetable.

  6. Oh I'm so sorry about Aunt Susie. But I'm so glad that you found your knight in shining armor! They are a rare breed, and a true treasure from God. Happy Anniversary!

  7. Thank you all for your kind thoughts and comments. They are greatly appreciated.


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