Thinking of my core family today. I am the eldest of four children turning sixty-five in October; living twenty-five years with a rare muscle debilitating virus and confined to bed. It feels weird being the only one alive.
My younger brothers passed away in their forties (one from cancer, one from heart disease), my baby sister (nine years younger than me) passed away two years ago at the age of fifty-two after five-year-long battle with Stage 4 lung cancer.
My father left us when he was sixty-two from tongue and throat cancer, My orphaned mother (her parents died when she was four) had a heart attack and a stroke. She left us when she was seventy-two, twenty-three years later. Dad was thirteen years her senior.
It’s an odd feeling. I often wonder if it was all a dream.
If possible, mend fences with estranged loved ones. Once they are gone, there will often be regrets. Keep in touch with family and friends. Life speeds by so quickly. Never leave anything unsaid.
Many times, I pick up my phone to call my siblings or my mother, then I realize I cannot. Grief comes in diverse waves like the ocean. So don’t be afraid to reach out.
Me when I was eleven. my two-year-old sister, a cousin, & my brothers, ten & three