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A Final Thought Before New Year Begins

I hesitated when I thought about sharing my feelings on today’s topic, but, then I realized (like so many other life issues) that I’m not the ONLY one here at the No Kill Shelter to struggle with it, and, maybe by sharing our thoughts, and our feelings, we all will heal a little more, it might make us stronger.

Today is the 39th anniversary of the accident that stole my younger sister, she was my best friend, my best buddy, and my Monopoly adversary.  It breaks my heart that she hadn’t even  turned 21.  She had two little boys; one, a newborn, survived the accident, but her 3-year old did not.  My father, who was driving, did not survive either. (Funny, but at the time, I believed that 48 years old was close to being ANCIENT!  Now, my son, at 41, is SO YOUNG!)  
Our family had faced many heartaches in the 10 years prior to the accident.  One of my uncles had been accidentally (as opposed to purposely, I suppose) electrocuted while doing some repairs, and  the woman I called “mom” had died of a cerebral hemorrhage during dinner while we were on a family cruise.  My sister and I stood there and watched as the doctors valiantly attempted to save her life.  Even with today’s technology, there isn’t much hope when the brain begins to bleed and/or swell. I’m glad that I had no clue that in less than two years, I would be back to that same cemetery, laying my dear Gramma to rest just two plots behind my sister…followed by my grandfather three years after Gramma. The funeral pushed me close to my breaking point.  At no point in my life had I ever felt as alone and abandoned as I did then.  My only thought, every time I quit picking at my own fingernails and looked up, was WHY?”  I stared at those three caskets, trying to understand “Why” “Why?” “WHY?” of course, there was no answer to be had…and, of course, I blamed “God”.
I barely remember that New Year…and I certainly wasn’t celebrating with the rest of the world.  It is interesting just how integral some sort of “celebration” is to the New Year.  It seems that we cannot “end” one year and “begin” the next without a ceremony or ritual of some sort, even if the only thing you do is watch a little of the celebration on TV and then retire early.  Because I was so wrapped up in my grief, I didn’t acknowledge the year end in any way, so stayed confused about “what year is it?” for a VERY long time.  I seem to have blocked the funeral from my memory. What little I do remember is that my nephew’s Sunday school class sang “Jesus Loves the Little Children”, and that everything was grey.  The sky was grey, the snow was grey, the caskets were grey, even the few leaves that tenaciously clung to a few (grey) trees were grey. And it was cold.  How appropriate that the sun was hidden, the trees were bare, everything covered with snow, and everything drained of color.  I did not understand how a “loving God” could do this to me….If He was so loving, the least He could do is strike me dead too…so that I wouldn’t have to face the world alone…
Perhaps the best thing for me, psychologically, was that I did not live in the Mid-West near my Dad & sister…I lived in the Florida Panhandle.  Eventually, I would leave the Land of Grey and go home, where everything was “colorful”.   But, before I went home, I made one last trip to the cemetery.  I needed to “talk” to my sister. I apologized for “tattling” on her, I apologized for “being mean”, I apologized for cheating in Monopoly…I confessed things she didn’t know, and would never have discovered!  I told her that I didn’t know how to face the future without her. I told her how unfair life was…and Then, I promised her that “I would do my best to live life full enough for BOTH of us.”  I swore that I would “live large”, that I wouldn’t do anything “half-way” and I would “take her with me” in every new adventure.  
Even after all these years, I still haven’t figured out “God’s reasons”…but that accident and the results were a huge “fork in the road” of my life.  In retrospect, my life is tremendously different than what it WOULD have ever been otherwise.  I’ve discovered the axiom  “you aren’t a true adult until you lose your parents” is true.  Only when you realize that there is no one to “save you” are you REALLY self-sufficient.  Only when you take on the mantle of “Matriarch” do you achieve true and complete self actualization.  Now, I KNOW that the LAST thing you would EVER consider is “moving back into Mom’s basement”….but, it IS there…it iS a LAST RESORT.  It is your “Ace in the Hole”.  A change occurs when YOU become “The Last Resort”…when the only person that stands between you and living under a bridge is YOU, you become a different person. Gone are the mornings of hitting that “snooze” button just one more time, gone are the thoughts of buying that cute pair of earrings with a portion of the grocery money (saying “well, I’ll just have dinner with Mom a few nights this week”, gone are the days of calling Dad to work his “magic” on the clothes washer when the water pump stops working, or calling Dad to come fish your wedding ring out of the pipe under the bathroom sink.  (Worst of all was not being able to call my sister with the million things I USED to call her about; from the baby’s fever, to the crazy person at Piggly-Wiggly, to things I couldn’t even ask my doctor about! Even now, 39 years later, I occasionally have one of those thoughts-“I bet my sister would laugh at peopleofwalmart.com!”)
Now that I am in my 60’s….and I’m watching my friend’s and cousin’s family issues…I see how fortunate I am.  I’m SO thankful that my father and my dear sister did not suffer.  The accident was fast, their deaths immediate.  My dad didn’t even have time to put his foot on the brake. The accident was measured in nano-seconds, not months or years.  I am thankful that they were spared enduring pain or suffering.   Last year, my dear husband watched his mother suffer through several months of assorted illnesses, watched her “lose ground” with each episode…   She refused to eat.  She had 95 years of excellent health and the illnesses were very difficult for her.  So, one day, she just decided that she was “tired of living”.  Once she made her decision, there was no point in trying to dissuade her…so, she quit eating…after about a week, she  fell into a coma, and then just “never woke up”.  (I wish us all to have full lives like she did. To have 95 years with virtually no health problems,  then to die quietly in our sleep! She raised two wonderful children, had two grandchildren and a great grandson.  Her husband left her enough money so that she never lacked for anything at all!). (Actually, with all that she had, I was surprised at what a miserable person she was, which proves  that money and things do NOT make you happy!)
My Dearest Sister/Cousin has been watching her father slowly lose himself to Alzheimer’s and chronic heart disease.  Not only does he not know his wife’s name most of the time, but I’ve lost count of the number of heart attacks he has survived.  He and his wife celebrated 63 years of marriage recently, but, sadly, he wasn’t really “there” for the celebration.  Every winter, for the last 5-6 years, I’m told “this is probably Dad’s last Christmas”…tragically, what I used to hear in those words was sadness…but now, I believe I’m hearing a prayer; his heart attacks are very painful, the Alzheimer’s stealing his brain’s ability to remember how everything; from the names of his children to remembering how to swallow, how to breathe, how to walk…. his illness is causing great emotional pain within the family.   Another cousin, Dave, who was only a few months younger than I,  lost his battle with Lou Gehrig’s Disease this summer.  He and his family suffered as the disease stole a little portion of him each day.  
As tragic and as unexpected as the accident was, I’m very grateful that my dad and my sister did not suffer. 
At first, the depression would descend on me sometime in October….and wouldn’t lift until Spring.  Life was unbearable, not just for me, but those around me, too.  One year, my ex-husband yelled at me “She’s DEAD!  GET OVER IT!”  Which, by the way, explains WHY he is an EX-husband!  It isn’t like I was CHOOSING to be so miserable!  There were two things that truly helped me.  
My favorite Auntie came to Florida for vacation about 10 years ago.  She and my uncle stayed in Jacksonville during the last two weeks of October and the first two weeks of November, prime time for my depression to start.  Of course, we talked a lot about my sister…and, because I trust her very much, I was very honest with her about my problems.  I confessed my problem with the overwhelming depression at Christmas.  And I also confessed to her that my sister and I had argued before she died. She asked me “Did you and your sister argue and fuss at one another before this one time?”  And I told her “Well, yes, of course, we fussed at each other a LOT!”  Then she asked “did you usually make up, and things were ok?  And I said “Yes, we never stayed mad for very long!”  Then, the next thing she said changed everything: “If you and your sister always fussed yet ALWAYS made up…don’t you think that by now, no matter what you might have fussed about, that she would gave forgiven you by now?  Do you think that she would WANT you to feel as bad as you do?  Wouldn’t she have done ANYTHING to make you happy again?  Just like you would do for her?”
I considered all of those questions for some time.  I knew in my heart, that due to the unique circumstances of our lives, that we were closer to one another than most sisters are.  We were almost “twin-like”, because we always seemed to know, no matter the distance between us, that the other was in trouble, or in need.  I knew in my heart that my sister wouldn’t have wanted me to be upset.  She WOULD have forgiven me, a long, long time ago. I discovered that it wasn’t HER forgiveness that I needed…but my own.  I HAD to forgive myself, and move on with my life.  I knew that I could never let go of the love I had for her…but I had to let go of my guilt.  I had to allow her memory to love me, for ME to love me!
I eventually learned to live without my sister.  I still miss her, but she inspired me to do things that I probably would have never thought were important enough to try.  I promised to “live for both of us” and to “live large”.  As a result, I didn’t get just ONE college degree, I earned TWO.  I didn’t have just ONE career, I had TWO.  I wasn’t satisfied with just receiving a “passing grade” in my classes…I wanted an “A” and, because I’m no Einstein, I had to work twice as hard to earn it! 

She is “with me” wherever I’ve gone over the past 39 years.   As watched the sun set in Ka’apalua, Maui, Seattle  and San Diego, sunrises at South Padre Island, West Palm Beach, and Denver.  She was with me on New Year at Greenwich, London 1999-2000 and in Paris at the Eiffel Tower 2000-2001.  We’ve hiked glaciers in Alaska, canyons in Grand Canyon, meadows in Yosemite, strolled The Great Wall, climbed Macchu Pichu,  cycled Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa, strolled the Castro, Stonehenge, Stratford-upon-Avon and the Seine, flown over the Nazca Lines, parasail end in Bora Bora.  She danced the night away with me in the Bahamas, Aruba, Puerto Vallarta, Puerto Rico, Orange County, Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco, Sacramento, Lake Tahoe, Big Bear, San Antonio, Austin, Dallas and Houston.  We’ve shopped NYC,  San Francisco, Beijing, Mexico City, South Coast and Honolulu and attended theater in London, New York, San Francisco and South Coast. And I “failed” skiing at both Big Bear and Heavenly.

Most of my cousins haven’t been out of Iowa because we come from a long line of tee-totalers, xenophobes and hodophobes.  (My grandparents “eloped” to Unionville, the grand sum total of 8 miles away!).  So, I’m only “widely traveled” in comparison to my family!  The point of this all was that, my sister was with me “in spirit” and by taking  my “stay-at-home” sister “with me”, it not only helped me tame my fear of traveling, but helped me recover, I didn’t miss her so much because she was only a thought away!

So, here we are…and I am okay.  I didn’t have to drink a bottle or two of wine every night this week just to shut up the noise between my ears.  I didn’t spend the week crying and feeling sorry for myself.  Instead of replaying the argument with my sister over and over in my head for the past week, and focusing on “our last Christmas”…I shared the story of our “best Christmas ever” with my dear husband…and I even laughed at my own silliness.

Yes, I still miss her.  But, I’m okay. I also came to realize that I didn’t need to go to Antigua or Giza to share something with her or to avoid that big black hole I crawl into…..there was a beautiful sunrise this morning, right here in Jacksonville….and she was right there with me, in spirit…just like she always is.   I’m beginning to believe that she is my Guardian Angel.

So…we start this new year, guilt free.  Not in the hole of depression, not in a foreign land…but right here at home…living in the present.

I hope each one of you is “ok” too.  Forgive yourself.  Your loved one wouldn’t want you to be suffering.  The No-Kill-Shelter is always here to listen and understand.  Whatever loss you face, you aren’t alone…a sister, a brother, a mom, dad or gramma…you miss them, especially at this time of year.  But, we are stronger than we think we are…and, in your moments when you need a shoulder to cry on…you know that we are all here to help one another!  Each of you are in Kelly’s heart and prayers, as each of you are in my heart and prayers.  Begin this new year with love in your heart…and know that this will be the best year ever!  Happy New Year!! 

Kelly will have “technology” soon!  She hasn’t stopped writing…but her pen only works on paper, it doesn’t work well on the computer screen!  She’s reading your posts on the blog!  (She-just-hates-writing-answers-with-hyphens!!)

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14 Responses to A Final Thought Before New Year Begins

  1. renaes24 says:

    Great post Mama!
    Will be glad when Kelly gets de-hyphenated. (I thought you needed to be a chemist for that….oh, well, shows what I know!)
    Happy New Year a bit early to all .

    • Mama Via says:

      Happy New Year, Renae!! Nope, not a chemist…I think it calls for a dermatologist!! (But it still hurts!)

      After a MONTH of record breaking temps down here…we are finally having a “cool” day(!) it will be only 70 degrees today! Hopefully, we will continue having “nice” weather…because that means fewer delays in the construction of the house; bad news is that if it stays so warm, the ocean doesn’t cool as it should, and it is high ocean temps driving an active hurricane season.

      The Lake is very busy this year, the Canadian Geese have settled in, and I’ve noticed a few single males out searching for a mate (they HONK at a volume that wakes us!) The Wood Ducks are choosing nesting sites (I really love watching the ducklings follow mama in the Spring!). The Cormorant, Great Blue Heron, Green Heron, Little Blue Heron, Snowy Egret, Great Egret and an occasional Sandhill Crane all visit the lake right behind our house, and one of my favorite things to do is to sit out on the patio and listen for their calls and watch their comings and goings.

      We live on a narrow strip of land located between the Atlantic (to the East about 7-8 miles) and the Saint John’s River (to the West about 7-8 miles). (Useless Factoid: The Saint John’s is one of the few rivers in the US that flows NORTH!). After the river passes our area, it takes a 90 degree turn and empties into the Atlantic, so, it seems that we live on a peninsula. This peninsula, if you will, had small lakes, marshes (both fresh and salt-water) and even a few “swampish” areas. We live on one of those small lakes.

      The new house is about 12 south-west of where we live now, it is NOTL (Not On The Lake)! It is within about 3 or 4 miles from the river, and 9-12 miles from the ocean. I’m sure we will still see a lot of wildlife, because the houses on the other side of the street are lake-front…but I won’t be able to watch them pairing up, feeding and teaching the young how to navigate a fresh water lake…or dig in my flower bed for yummy treats! I think I will miss them a lot at the NOTL house! (DH said that I wouldn’t miss cleaning the duck/goose mess out of the pool!!)

      Welk, that’s the wildlife report here…hope you are feeling better! Happy New Year!

  2. Twister says:

    Mama, many things in your post struck me, but the grey world hit me the hardest. I have experienced that world where all color drains, sounds are muffled, all emotions are unwelcome. Feeing like an orphan at 40 y/o, somehow moving forward in spite of being deaf and blind. Feeling cut loose in a raft in rough seas with 2 young boys looking to me to guide them.
    It was unexpected and scary, but eventually I pulled out of it. My boys needed me and their sweet faces pulled me forward.
    Well that was long ago and all is good today anyway.
    Love y’all!

    • Mama Via says:

      Yes, Twister, that grey consumes everything like a black hole does…and certainly initiates a depressive episode. I’m sorry that you have had to experience that Grey World! I KNOW the “Orphan Feeling” too! (I was almost 21!) I think a person is more prepared in their 50’s to handle it…for ME, part of that “orphan feeling” was the feeling of abandonment, and worse, the insecurity. The feeling of “not really belonging” anywhere. There were many times when someone would open their home to me for their Holiday Family Celebration and Dinner…I discovered that even being surrounded by the host’s numerous friends and family members, I can genuinely say that I had never felt as alone as I did then. (And Christmas was especially painful!). I got to the point that I would accept a plate of Christmas Dinner…but, I felt LESS abondoned just staying home by myself! (At least I could watch TV at home to take my mind off of my sorrow.

      How lucky you were to have your boys…and how lucky they were to have you!

      I’m sending you a hug, Twister…and a wish for both of us…that we never feel as abandoned, as lonely or as frightened as we have in the past. May our many sorrows be behind us…

      Giving you great love and best wishes for the new Year!!

  3. Gwen Bazzrea says:

    My heart is breaking after reading the first half of this blog. Thank God for the “HEA” or happily ever after (or as close as we can come down here with heartache and lessons learned).
    As usual, your writing has made me count my blessings…my sister, brother, parents, and mother in law- all in a 30 mile radius. I’ve spoken to or texted all in the past 2 days. Handsome husband and fun size son are watching a movie in the next room. King size son is with friends, as every newly de-attached 18 year old should be. [Yep, I made up a new word. For you new folks, it’s okay to do that here].
    So thanks for the reminder. I’m continuing my upward tract emotionally. The damn black dog is sitting at my feet, keeping them warm–not smothering me. Who knew?! One day, I’ll build that mother-fukker a doghouse and I’ll kick him out.
    Love to all the shelter sisters,
    Gwen, a.K.a. Bazzethound

    • Mama Via says:

      Well, Gwen, dear…you know just how HEA my life has become…God FORBID that ANYTHING ever happen to my DH or DS or ANY of the people I love so much…the only OBIT I want to read is my own…(I’m damned tired of being left as the “only survivor”…but, then again, there’s a LOT to be said for being on THIS side of the dirt and NOT the OTHER side!!)

      I’m REALLY happy that you’ve tamed that big black dog to warm your feet, Gwen!! That is about the best place you can keep him…so you can keep an eye on him!

      Gwen, do I remember correctly that you also suffer with fibro? Have you tried Cymbalta? It was a LIFE SAVER for both mental AND physical problems!! Speaking of physical problems…I know I’ve mentioned my “back procedures” several times…in either September or October (I can’t remember) I began getting cortosteroid epidural injections into my spine every two weeks. They insert a HUGE long needle at my tailbone and go up to L4/5…working under the scar tissue I’ve developed. I’m under General Anesthesia, so, I don’t feel anything…until the anesthesia wears off! Anyway…after I completed the series to L4/5, then they started a series at T4/5/6…I have one more injection to do…and then I should be done for a while. As painful (and expensive) as these injections gave been, they have been VERY successful for me….(I’m pausing for applause and cheers here….). Those T vertebrae were EXTREMELY painful, no matter if standing up or laying down, standing straight of stoop shouldered…those spots just under the snaps on my bra were KILLING ME!!! I’m not giving the short-shrift to the L-zone, those hurt too…AND I couldn’t walk!! So, I thank medical science in the 21st Century!!

      Much love to you and your family!

  4. TrulyUSA says:

    Dear, Dear Mama, you put into words what so many of us live, or have lived, at some point in our lives. Let’s face it, you don’t get older without a lot of bumps and bruises along the way. You lose people you love along the way, some to death and some to life, which can be as cruel to your heart. Some get hit harder than others, and it is not easily understood. Now that I am older, I like to look back at the difficult, usually self-inflicted, times of my life and see the silken thread that leads one thing to another and disappears ahead, into the unknown. To follow that thread is to live in spite of the fear of what has happened in the past and what could happen in the future. Like the old cowboy used to say, courage is being scared to death and saddling up anyway. Ride on, Mama, ride on.

  5. Mama Via says:

    Thank you, Truly, how true! Often, our blindest spots are those where we are unable to see how we contributed to the difficult times. (Or SOMETIMES punishing ourselves for our contribution unnecessarily!). I didn’t contribute to the accident that killed my family. BUT, for many years, I blamed myself because I helped my Dad get the car! I’m responsible for my actions and re-actions AFTER the accident…but I wasn’t responsible for the accident.

    I told my DH just a few days ago…that if I were given the choice, I would allow everything that has happened in my life happen again…despite the pain and anguish. I played “If I Hadn’t…” If I hadn’t divorced my ex-husband, I would have never left California, which meant that I wouldn’t have been living near the Springs, and if I hadn’t been living near the Springs, I would have never met the person who introduced me to my DH….actually, THAT thread actually went all the way back to 1970….(but THAT thread is only important to ME….)

    In that same thread…everything that I endured in my childhood…from the molestation, emotional and physical abuse, gang rape, watching my “mom” die, even the nights I went to bed hungry or crying…every moment contributed to the person I am right this moment. I did not understand it then…but I understand now…Without those moments, how could I possibly understand the hurts my son endured…how could I understand the things my husband shared…or what Kelly shares, or what any of you share with me…

    Everyone of us is here, at the no-Kill shelter for a reason…sometimes we NEED understanding….sometimes we GIVE understanding, sympathy, a word of wisdom…and sometimes we do both in the same comment. Every one of you ladies here is very special to me…especially the ones I know are reading, and only comment when something moves them…

    The ones that I feel sorriest for…are not HERE…they haven’t learned anything in life. They think they know it all…and…they don’t “share the benefit” of their experiences…mostly for fear of having their pettiness exposed. They are self-involved and selfish…and every statement they make proves it. Even worse, is that they do not understand why “friends” abandon them or why people avoid them, parody or insult them. They are hateful and self-loathing. They were raised as spoiled children, and remain spoiled adults, who, no matter how much they are given, want more…yet, they aren’t willing to WORK for more, they expect to be given whatever they want. They never seem to learn that there is more satisfaction in having something you’ve EARNED than being given something with no effort at all. I don’t know what they see in the mirror, but it isn’t reality….and…just maybe, it’s for the best…I’m not sure that their delicate psychological constitutions could actually deal with reality. It’s only the soft-focus lens that they see the world through that keeps them from a padded room…or from committing mass murder….

    my New Years resolution is to try to do better with the horses…I won’t try to help them…the old “you can lead a horse to water” thing…if that horse believes that swamp water is champagne…fine…let it believe…it is a true waste of my time to try to help…I will expend my effort where it is appreciated…and I will remember that no matter how hard you try, you can’t teach a horse to sing or tap dance…horses are meant to be horses….no farm is complete without them…and, if you are smart, even a dumb-ass horse can teach you SOMETHING!

  6. dadgum says:

    I’m not sure how you got on my ‘follow’ list…but I’m glad you did. I just recently joined the world of ‘true adulthood’. Not sure what to think yet, except I understand my own parents a bit better, I think.
    Thank you..

    • Mama Via says:

      Hi, DadGum! welcome (and condolences) to “true adulthood”…I hope to get there someday, myself…

      I discovered that the older my parents got, the smarter they became! Amazing! Then there was the moment when I hear my dad’s words and voice coming from my mouth when I’m yelling at my son….and, most horrifying,,,when I get up in the morning, and I find my Gramma looking back at me….it wouldn’t be so bad…if she didn’t look so tired and used up!! She is looking a little frayed around the edges!!!

      The Blog Owner is Kelly…she is taking a short “sabbatical” while we get her space bar working again (Because-it-is-very-irritating-
      To-have-to-write-and-answer-comments-with-frigging-hyphens!) So, I am filling in for her for just a wee bit longer…she is recovering from the flu, too, dagnabbit! So, I’m guessing she will be back sometime within the next 10 days.

      Are you in the US or Canada? Hopefully, all of the folks that keep up with the goings on here at the No-Kill-Shelter are safe from the floods…and are only being quiet because they are recovering from a wonderful New Years celebration! (All of us have the millions of people affected by the tornados, rain and flooding in our hearts and prayers!)

      DadGum, I’m not sure what trial we will follow this new year…but, I’m sure that “Our Queen of Everything” will have that figured out as we go forward.

      All of us here certainly try our best to be supportive to one another, and I’m sure that not only will you fit right in with all of us, but you will offer a fresh, young, new perspective to some of us old dogs….so, please don’t hesitate to throw your 2 cents in when you have an opinion or a comment!

      Again, welcome, welcome….I’m sure that Kelly will say hello to you when she gets a chance!

    • TrulyUSA says:

      Welcome DadGum! You’re going to like it here!

  7. Sherry says:

    Thanks Mama. I was feeling quite alone lately even with a houseful of relatives. Sorry I haven’t been around much lately, but I mentioned my mother-in-law had lung cancer and I just nursed her through her last days in September. My husband as executor of the estate had to do everything as his father was not all together mental sound. It was a lot of work and I was the only one to take care of my father-in-law and go through her things etc. It was so hard but my two little ones needed a happy mom through the Christmas holidays. Then tragedy struck us again. I found my father-in-law on the floor of his bathroom. He had a stroke and the doctors couldn’t do anything for him. That was on Dec 16th. For four days I sat by his hospital bed waiting for the end. I was alone with him when he breathed his last. So on top of trying to give my kids a semi-happy Christmas, I had to plan a funeral. My husband and his brothers refused to do a eulogy due to a dark past so I had to. All the family and friends we called three months ago to tell them my mother-in-law had died, I had to call again and give them more bad news. Then I had relatives come in for the funeral and stay at my place. This was the hardest holiday season I’ve ever been through. Now its up to me alone to go through their condo and clean it out. I’ve managed to keep the big black dog at bay by sheer will and being busy, but now that everything is slowing down and everyone has gone home, I feel it’s panting on the back of my neck. Reading how you suffered so much and made it through to HEA I will keep up hope that things will look brighter some day.

    Thanks again Mama, you always know what to say.

    Miss you Kelly. Hope you get de-hyphenated soon.

    • Mama Via says:

      Oh, honey…my heart is breaking for you! Please know that I am there for you in your darkest moments, holding your hand, and giving you strength. Sometimes, it is only the promise of “Tomorrow” that gets us through the sorrow of “Today”…so, never let go of your hope, your belief in HEA. “It came to pass” the Bible says…remember that,,,it didn’t come to STAY, it came to PASS…so, trust in those words, remember that whatever you face…it, too, will pass….(so, tell that Big Black Dog to “Sit” and “Stay” and “be a good dog”!)

      Your sacrifices for your DHs mother and father during their final days is an act of love and respect…and your husband serving as executor is a thankless job as well. (And it certainly speaks volumes about not just the love you have for them, but the morals and ethics (and love) that both you and your DH learned/experienced in your formative years. Undoubtedly…all of your parents, both his and yours, would be proud of you both….and grateful for all that you’ve done.

      One last word…children learn right and wrong from their parents…they are little sponges that soak up EVERYTHING…certainly, every loving action and every sorrow was absorbed in some way by your Little Ones….I pray that you have a long, healthy, pain free life…but rest assured…your Little Ones have learned early from you that End Of Life issues are a part of Life itself…and someday, after many many years of HEA, when the time comes….. your Little Ones (by then, Aged Ones) will be holding your hand and loving you when it is time for the Final Goodbye…

      I pray that each of us is that lucky. On behalf of Kelly, and everyone else here at RBMD, I extend our greatest sympathy to you…you won’t ever forget your loved ones…but, like fine wine, the pain and sorrow will mellow out…and their loss won’t be hurtful as it once was…

      You have our prayers….

  8. Lori says:

    Well written mama. I haven’t been here in a while cause my mom passed away in Florida and I’m in Connecticut and she’s buried in upstate New York. I’ve been crazy with flights, flight cancellations and driving hours. It’s bad enough to deal with mom passing but add to that funeral, obituary and the estate. It’s overwhelming. But happy new year

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