Wednesday, July 27, 2011


Brenda and I met over thirty years ago. She and my cousin C were girlfriend and boyfriend through high school, then an engaged couple a bit beyond high school, and then, a married couple from that moment to her last. A couple of daughters followed very shortly and a third (that elusive search for a male child) followed several years later. I have it on good authority that my cousin C never really let go of his desire for a son but Brenda certainly put the cabash on any more tries. 

my two, their three, and other sibling cousins

We had several conversations on the subject. She envied my having had one of each and especially the son first. Beyond that, Brenda and I shared many stories and created many memories over the years. Brenda's obituary phrased it thusly, "Brenda was a happy woman when she went to sleep Thursday night, July 14 and during the wee hours of July 15, she entered into a sweeter . . . "  

Her daughters . . . her daughters . . . I couldn't get over her daughters that day of the funeral. They were stoic even in their extreme grief and each gave warm, heartfelt, glowing tributes. The youngest put it aptly, "Your teachings will forever be used throughout my life."  Funerals are hard generally. But, when there are so many parrellels (she was only 2 years older) . . .  I couldn't help trading places and seeing my son and daughter sitting in the front pew . . .

He and I met in the eighties; working for the same company for many years until only a few years ago when he resigned to continue his music education. G was an excellent musician with a lovely voice. He spent much of his time performing, directing choirs, and engaging in the business of sharing the beauty of joyful noise. It was such a mission that sent him to NJ a couple of weeks ago. Having barely arrived on the campus of Ryder University when he suffered a massive stroke. He remained in critical condition until his kidneys failed. He died Saturday. I got the word from a mutual friend while standing in the parlour viewing Brenda's body (prior to her funeral on Sunday). G, and only child, and 4 years younger than me had an amazing following of a family of friends. The news of his passing hit the office pretty hard for he was a huge personality and, "so young, so young."

Finally, there is the newest recruit. She's gone. Not in the entered sweeter sleep . . type gone. Just gone. There was a planned leave of absence and then I thought, a plan for some kind of return. But, perhaps I was mistaken and missed a queue somewhere along the line. I left messages and sent emails and . . . nothing. Well, next to nothing. Facing the office every day without her there has been more difficult than I would have imagined. Her absence hits hard but what hit hardest is the silence, the total and utter silence. . . after having shared so much over the past year.    

She's been known to read here and if she still is I'd like her to know I miss you and I care. If thre is anything at all that I can do, please don't hesitate to ask. Please take very gentle care, and here's a big HEY to the kids. And p.s. the actor was in your country last weekend. He had tales to tell. 

July has felt like trial that wasn't going my way. Each day another damning revelation to further sink my case. Still, I have worked to shake off the pall and get on with the business rejoicing the happy events off the month. One aunt recently celebrated her first birthday. This is the first birthday after becoming an octogenarian and in her view license to start over. Another aunt is now 69 and a cousin, 56. The anniversary of my own birth is in a couple of days and the plan is to eat, drink, and make some merry with the family. 

It hasn't been the greatest July, the past couple of weeks in particular. So, I thank my daughter for cluing me to this video which made laugh, you know, out loud and everything.  I needed that and will likely refer to it often. 


  1. Oh, D, I'm so sorry. It's too much at once. It's been a pretty crappy July around here too.

    Hold on to the memories and good thoughts.

    And, what the hell, go ahead and ENJOY your birthday!


  2. Well, having just dusted off my blog after nearly two years of absence, I thought I should go through my blogroll of old friends to see who's still active. I was delighted to find that you are, but sad to read of all this loss you've suffered lately. You pay beautiful tribute to all.

    Also, I'm really glad the Lingo people got the word right in the end.

  3. A hug for you, and a wish for happier days ahead.


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