Blog, Death, sister

Remembering What We Want to Forget

Day 287

The last few days have been difficult. I have been deep in thought about my sister. Tomorrow is the anniversary of her death. Losing her was hard. She fought the good fight and I admired her strength so much.

Today I am remembering the events I wish I could forget. The experiences I shared with her that I have never shared with anyone. They were hard and I do not wish to put those memories in anyone else’s mind.

I wrote a blog after she was admitted to the hospital. She had a stroke which left it difficult for her to talk. I remember her trying to say something she could not get out, stumbling over every word. She finally took a breath and said one word crystal clear. “Shit.” That was just like her to express her displeasure so clearly.

She was so frustrated trying to talk. And I tried so hard to understand what she needed to say. I feel like we were both cheated out of those final conversations. But it was not meant to be.

There have been a lot of unexpected triggers over the last few days. I was not expecting them and I was not expecting this wash of grief. I have done well celebrating her life and remembering the fullness of her life in favor of the difficulty of her passing. But the universe had a different idea this year.

I wrote a blog about BJ when she went into the hospital. I posted it below if you care to read. I would not write another blog until the year came to a close.

My Heart is Breaking

I wanted to write this blog today because tomorrow, I want to tell you about my sister before the word cancer was always associated with the telling of her life. She was much more than that.

Blog, Death, friends

When New Friends Pass Away

Day 260

It was a full day here, running errands, cooking and playing with the grandkids. It was all in all a nice day. These simple days which may seem unremarkable on the surface are actually the best days we will often experience.

Tonight I took a second to browse through FaceBook. I was shocked to read a fairly recent friend of mine had passed away, seemingly very suddenly. It has hit me hard which may seem strange to some considering the short length of our friendship.

He was evidently a very loved and highly regarded man. People have known him their entire life and are just devastated by his passing. Our friendship is just a fleeting moment in what was evidently a life very well lived.

This man was a country guy. Easy going, loved to talk and always had a kind word for everyone. He taught me how to cut cabochons out of slabs of rock — something I always wanted to learn to do. I was only one of the hundreds of students he had over the years. I never saw him when he was not smiling. I will miss him.

I learned shortly after we met that he was a preacher at a small church nearby. I was not surprised. He was that kind of guy. One who lived each day in goodness. The kind of preacher we all wish we had.

It’s funny how people we have known for a relatively short period of time can touch us more than people we have known our entire life. These kinds of friendships go unnoticed because they are so seemingly insignificant. But they are not.

I have come to know my fellow bloggers here and care about the things you share. I wanted you to know that. We may be but a blip on the radar of each other’s lives, but one that I consider dear to me.

Godspeed, Robert. You will be missed.

Blog, Death, mother

Go Lightly

Day 223

It has been a long and emotional day. But in life, there are always highlights.

When we arrived into town where the small cemetery is located, I notice a street sign – Go Lightly Street. That made me smile.

When we arrived at the cemetery, I looked down at my phone. The time read 11:11. 💕

There were a lot of unexpected changes today. The minister was sick so someone we did not know held the service. He was a young minister who cared a great deal about paying the deepest respect for our mom. He was going to perform a young person’s baptism following our service. The circle of life goes on.

It was a beautiful day and the journey has come to a close. Outside I looked up to see the moon. I always love it when the moon shines during the day.

It was a beautifully cool day and the sun was bright but not hot. Standing on the hill at the cemetery, I knew mom would be pleased.

Go Lightly…

Blog, Death, memories, mother

Tactile Memories

Day 148

We are out of town staying in my mother-in-law’s home. She passed away in December and we came down so hubby and his sister could address some of her affairs.

The first thing I noticed when we came in was the house still smells like mom. A wave of mixed emotions washed over me remembering how much she loved this place and how quickly cancer had taken her life.

The ladies from the church left us a gift of a prayer blanket. It was such a sweet and appreciated gesture. These ladies were her dear friends and confidants for the last 15 years and I know they saw her through some difficult times. It was so telling that they thought of us and how this loss would affect us.

The house remains decorated with her things. Her dishes, her artwork, and her furniture all evoke memories of her. We have been here two days now and of course she has been uppermost in our thoughts and our conversation. Our talks are filled with memories and wishes that she could have been with us just a little longer.

That’s how it is with those we love, isn’t it? There is never really enough time. Today I sat and read through her text messages remembering the daily struggles she had the last few months of her life. But always buried in the midst of messages from the hard days were messages full of life and determination.

Tonight as we went out to get dinner, the sun was setting behind her house. She would have enjoyed the colors of the sunset. Being here brings back a lot of difficult memories, but also brings back the wonderful memories. They far outweigh the painful memories.

Rest well, Mama. We miss you.

Blog, Death, illness, loss, memories, sister

When Memories Slap You in the Face

Day 122

Grief is sneaky. It sometimes waits until the wounds have slightly scabbed over. It waits for you to let your guard down. Then the memory comes and you are slapped in the face.

Today it was in the form of a song. I looked for it intentionally. I was planning to use it in my blog, but not this way. It brought me back to a time when my sister, Rosie, was told there was nothing else they could do to treat her cancer. The memories of her telling me she cried in the night so no one else would hear. The sadness she felt knowing she was leaving the children and grandchildren whom she loved so much.

This song made me ugly cry. I didn’t see it coming. I wrote about this song once before, but I thought I was strong enough to listen. I was wrong. Instead I have picked all the scabs off and now I am raw.

I miss you, Sissy.