My father’s sister Ann made her transition earlier this week.My cousin Deborah and her husband Herbie were her primary caregivers for these past 10 years.
My aunt did not lead an easy life but had the hutzpah to do things people of her age seldom risked.She allowed life to guide her onward- no matter what.
These last years she grappled with dementia,but in her own inimitable way,she kept her heart at peace and drew from her faith.
My father was very close to his sister, perhaps his compassion for her came as a result of her being the oldest daughter of 11 siblings.
My father would have known what that meant, as he was the oldest son, and one can only imagine the responsibility inherrent to both of their positions in their family.
My father was a gatherer, and that included his spearheading of many family reunions.With 52 cousins, reunions for me were times for great fun! Often my father and his brothers would organize games at these reunions and hand out prizes.We enjoyed games like relays, and volley ball and 4 legged races.Life was good, and the prizes while important, were of secondary importance. Time with one another seemed to be all that mattered.
My dad’s passion was making people happy and one way he achieved this was to be certain that everyone at the reunion received a prize.My cousin related to me today that throughout her 91 years, my aunt kept her favorite prize by her side.It was a bank in the form of a baseball player.She received it from my dad at a family reunion.
Three days before her transition, my cousin related to me that my aunt had this prize by her bedside.When she asked her mom who gave her the prize ,Ann replied,” Henry”, my dad’s name.I’d like to think that prize was a symbol,a prize of good things to come for my Aunt.I’d like to believe that she was not only close to the object , her prize, but to the thought and presence of her brother who had gone before her .One never knows the meaning of little things, but of this one can be certain,the love of this brother and sister touched us forever and that is our prize to share.