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An Anniversary of Sorts

Waking up this morning I immediately began puzzling about today's post. How best to summarize my feelings on the anniversary of my mother-in-law's death? Am I sad, or am I happy? Sad, because we'll not see her again in this life, or happy that she's reunited with her loved ones in a better place?

Both Bruce's brother and sister urged him to visit the graveside, which he did yesterday morning after setting up the booth. Returning in the afternoon, I asked him how he felt, to which he replied-- "mixed feelings." I know what he means.

Although my father has been dead almost half of my life, I've gone to the cemetery maybe three times. Mostly, because I know he's not there. Sure there's a marker, but it means little to me. I prefer to think of both the good times, and the bad, while he was still living. Have I ever told you how we had to polish our shoes every afternoon when we returned home from school? Shoe inspections followed when he got home from work with punishment meted out if they weren't done properly! I suspect today's children have not once polished shoes, however, if I were having to buy shoes for eight people, maybe I would have done the same. Times, obviously, have changed.

But I digress...

Taking the trash out to the can out front, I immediately knew what I would use. Why, of course, the Christmas cactus I brought home from her house. For two weeks or so, I've watched as buds appeared and wouldn't you know it--today the first one opened wide. Now, that's how I like to commemorate her life--with a tangible reminder of her. Serendipity? Maybe, but it sure speaks to me more than a headstone.

I can just picture her delight upon seeing the cactus, which, undoubtedly she'd babied throughout the year, come to life once again with brilliant fuchsia blooms. Furthermore, there was this in the Times on Saturday: Blog of Yesteryear If you watch the slideshow, you'll be sure to recognize one of the diaries. Pretty amazing to me that it showed up now. Coincidence? I don't think so.

Making her gingerbread this Christmas, (although I did not attempt the pinwheels because I lost the recipe) using her scissors when cutting threads on Matt's quilt, those kinds of things keep her alive for me.

Rest in peace dear Judy Ann Peck, you've left much good behind. Thank you, thank you, for giving me your son to share my life with, and be the father to my children. I loved you, and still do.
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