Monday, January 23, 2006

My mother came from a family of 13 children. I guess they didn't have birth control back then. She was the third from the youngest. A girl and a boy were born after her. My mom and her younger sister were very close growing up and in the years following after their marriages and births of their children. They did a lot together........shopping, celebrating holidays together, talking and sharing secrets on the phone, etc.

In fact, they were so close that one would pick up the phone to call the other one and she would already be on the line without the phone every having rung! They used to laugh about this and tell us that they were so close that they must be communicating telepathically and just thinking of each other would make them both want to call each other at the same time. That is the explanation they always gave for this phenomenal and frequent happening! Whatever the explanation, they did seem to sense things going on in the others life without being told.

I remember when my mother had been hospitalized for the last six months of her life with something the doctors could never figure out or give a name to. My aunt, my cousins told me, was napping on the couch in her living room about 10 miles away from the hospital when she sat up on the couch as if someone had pushed her to a sitting position and announced to them that my mother had just passed away! Needless to say, they thought she had been having a dream. I called their house a few minutes later with the news and the time of my mothers passing. I tell this fact so you will better understand my sorrow.

I received a phone call this evening at 8:33 PM. My cousin was on the phone. She wanted to tell me that her mother, my aunt, had passed away tonight at 7:55 PM. She was 86 years old last July. She lived a long and happy life! She is now reunited with her husband, her parents and all of her siblings! What a joyous reunion that must have been! To be greeted at the entrance to heaven by those you love, and to see the faces of your brothers and sisters once again. I can only imagine the feelings of love and happiness that my aunt and mother must be experiencing this night.

I have mixed feelings as I deal with this news. Part of me is very happy for my aunt and my mother. Part of me is feeling very sad. You see, this aunt kind of filled in for my mother (it was an understanding they had between them) after my mother's death. She didn't become my mother....no one can ever replace another human being.....but she became a "stand-in" mother to my two sisters and me. And since our families were extremely close emotionally to one another and we spent every holiday together and lots of vacations together I am having some trouble. As I watch the fire in the fireplace I am reminded of the camping vacations and being outside in the evenings watching the fireflies flitting through the night like the sparks now rising up the chimney.

If I close my eyes I can hear the laughter and smell the marshmellows roasting over the open fire. And then I am transported by my memories of Aunt Annette's pumpkin and pecan pie at Thanksgiving. No one could make pecan pie like Aunt Annette! And the Christmases spent with her. And how she searched and searched to find just the right gift for each of us and if she couldn't find exactly what she was looking for, she would make it or craft it herself! I remember when my first child was born and how Aunt Annette came to the house when I came home from the hospital with this beautiful baby girl in my arms so unsure of what to do and being reassured by my aunt that my instincts would take over and not to worry!

I remember the way she held me up after the death of my first husband, the father of my children. The strength she was able to give me.....that feeling that said "I can go on"!

So, to you Aunt Annette......"we can go on" and we will! But my dear Auntie, we will miss you!

11 comments:

Lori said...

I'm so sorry about your loss. It sounds like you have some beautiful memories of your time with her...and how wonderful to think that she is home at last with all those who have gone before her.

McSwain said...

I'm sorry for your loss. I know those mixed feelings so well. When a family member leaves after living a full life, it's so hard to have them gone from us, even though we know that they are with others they love. I always like to say that the time we're apart is just a drop in the bucket of eternity. God bless, Martie.

Nelly said...

May God bless you and your family Martie. What wonderful memories!

clew said...

So sorry, Martie. (((hugs)))

Nicole said...

I'm so sorry for your loss Martie. And I'm so very glad that you were able to have someone as wonderful as your Aunt Annette in your life. I hope your memories help you through this sad time.

Hugs from Maine...

Bainwen Gilrana said...

I'm so sorry for your loss, Martie. *hugs*

Connie and Rob said...

Dear Martie,

I am so sorry for your loss. Your Aunt Annette sounds like she was an incredible person. Bless her.

Hugs to you. Connie

naive-no-more said...

I'm sorry that I didn't have a chance to see Aunt Annette near the end, but I'd rather remember her how she was when I stayed with her and Uncle Chuck.

martie said...

Thanks to all of you for your words of comfort....and I do have so many great memories to fall back on so she will always remain with me that way!

BonnieBlueFlag said...

Dear Martie,

I am new to your Blog, but I had to add my condolences on the loss of your dear Aunt Annette.

It reminded me of the loss of my mother's dear sister a number of years ago. I cried and cried when she passed away. My mother and her sister had grown to be very much alike in their mannerisms, and in their laughter, and I knew that she loved me very much.

I still miss her.

rosie said...

What a heartfelt post! Hugs to you ((((Martie))). I am truly sorry for you loss. From what I read, you've been blessed with truly beautiful memories. Please accept my sincere condolences.