Saturday, October 24, 2015

... life and death-- shadowy and vague...

The boundaries which divide 
Life from Death 
are at best shadowy and vague.
Who shall say where the one ends,
and where the other begins?
~ Edgar Allan Poe

My other fella’s mom died. She passed on Thursday night after a long brave battle with cancer.

Cancer Sucks!

I had just chatted her up at her other son’s wedding reception last weekend. We discussed my wedding pumpkins that I’ve been growing, her nearly pumpkin-size tomatoes that she had been growing, our ex-husbands, Southern food especially potato salad, and basically our love for her other son aka my other fella.

She was a brave, very cool lady who raised one of the best people I know. I didn’t know her as a close friend; I wasn’t a family member. There are so many people grieving for her that I have to consider grief circles. She has this inner circle of those who are terribly sad and lost. This circle includes family members and close friends.  But, she also has numerous other circles of mourners which include those of us who were touched by her in some way.

She laughed hard and played well with others. It was the little touches that I remember such as she was always put together. When her cancer became unmanageable, she used marijuana for medicinal purposes and kept it in a Vera Bradley bag.

Death leaves the living with unanswered questions that we forgot to ask because the time was never “right” or we forgot because it wasn’t important in the moment. Death also makes us question our own relationships. Is this person important in my life? If so, tell them now! Does this person bring too much drama? If so, isn’t life too short for such nonsense?

When my other fella’s mom passed, I called my mom hysterical. “Don’t die,” I cried. Mom responded, “I’ll try not to.” Cancer has touched nearly all of my family members. It took my grandmother when she was in her early 60's. 

My mom just dropped by with some Halloween presents along with a great-grandmother’s platter and some other “do you want this? We’re throwing it out” items. It was a light-up skull. Um, yes. I’ll take it to my office. She's 74. I asked her to live at least forty more years. "I'll try my best," she hugged me. 

My friend’s mom had a hard time eating in the end. Part of our conversation was about food digestion and how when you’re older or ill, some things just aren’t worth eating. I think there is probably a good Bat Fit post in that message but that is for another day.

It’s been a still, quiet few days of worry about my friend and reflection about loss. Dying in October when the leaves are turning always seems more profound, more painful. Nature is reminding us that this too shall pass. 

The hibsicus bloom here was ready to open the very next morning but an overnight frost stunted it. One never knows when nature will end a life. 

Friends, go forth and hug someone! And whatever your faith, lift up some love/ say a prayer/ light a candle for my other fella's mom, Sandra.


  1. I`m sorry to hear of that, but I like what you say about grief circles, which is really how we set friends in as well.

  2. I don't know what to say-- just reading this brought tears to my eyes. My mother was diagnosed with breast cancer last year, and although all her current tests came back clear... I still can't help those toxic "what if" thoughts from coming through.

    My very deep condolences for your loss.
    Cancer sucks...

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  4. So profound, my dear ... expressing so many of my own feelings in your graceful words ... as we have both experienced similar October losses.

    I am ever grateful that our paths crossed as they did, and that I now count you among my friends!

  5. Dear, sweet friend,

    I am deeply sorry for your loss. Know that I am here for you and that I love you very, very much.