Tuesday, March 03, 2015
it's been a bit too much lately. losing dad. having my dream job done away with ("we're not ready for co-creation" and besides, "you're not commercial."). getting turned down for another job after being tortured with an agonizing wait of an entire month. and now aunt mary has died as well. these are relentlessly grey, cold, dark days. it really is all too much.
aunt mary was such a presence in our family. married to my dad's oldest brother, she raised five children and has countless grandchildren and great-grandchildren. i'm so glad i visited her when i was there when dad died back in november. although i didn't know it would be the last time, it was a very nice visit. her beautiful home on the hill with the views of vast rolling prairie (these photos were taken from her house one summer) and traces of an old indian trail if you looked in the right spot when the grass was just right in the summer or when winter's snows had filled the ghosts of the ruts. you could feel the history blowing there in the prairie winds. and her cabinets of curiosities - quilts, antiques, artifacts. she always had stories to tell, stories that more often than not resulted in everyone dissolving in genuine laughter. she was always so positive and cheerful. sort of a stalwart ray of sunshine in the midst of the chaos of our big family. we sipped tea and ate cookies and listened to family stories and it was always wonderful to gather around her kitchen table.
she was 89, so she had a long, full life. uncle jim had died back in 2008, but she was surrounded by her children and grandchildren and great-grandchildren, so she wasn't alone. she was, like all of us, hit hard by my dad's death and i wonder if perhaps she didn't think it was time to go and join those who had gone before.
although i'm not sure that i believe that's what happens, it is comforting to think of it at times like this. i can just hear her laugh and dad's laugh and uncle jim's and uncle red's as well. and i hope that maybe somewhere they are now laughing and swapping stories together once again, perhaps playing a game of "tell" (the card game that's actually called "oh hell") with grandma kate. and that they know that we miss them. and that we are forever changed by the time we had with them.