As some of you know from previous blog posts, while I hang out with my baby boy these first months of his life, the fabulous Lea has been taking my place as lead facilitator at our class. What you may or may not know (because we have only been hinting at this for now… email firstname.lastname@example.org for more info!) is Lea is also co-authoring our Facilitator Training Guide with me so you guys can start senior storytelling groups at your neighborhoods too! What this means, is outside of class time, I have been hanging out with Lea a lot (picture baby Kian in my arms, Lea on the computer, us talking and laughing) and getting to know her really well. So how cool was it when one day, Lea texted me to tell me she was bringing her mom (from outside the city) to class, and asked if she could bring her mom over to visit Kian and me afterwards. I was like, yes and yes!
I loved hearing from Marie how much she enjoyed her visit. She quoted bits and pieces of stories she heard from the day: how Greta was coping with recent deaths in her family, how different members of the group shared about sad times, and how Beatrice wrapped up by saying the most comforting thing: “After sad times, there are happy times.” The whole time Marie was talking, Lea was beaming with pride for her mom. And I loved it when later that day I went through the handwritten stories that Lea had handed to me, I saw one by Marie.
From real family, to friends who have become family, it’s so cool to feel so connected to so many amazing people in such a real way ;)
I was three, almost four, and my mom was just about to have a baby. I remember being very concerned that the new baby would change everything. At the same time, I was very excited to be a big sister. On the day it snowed and I was out in the yard playing and decided to be sure that my mom saw how grown I was, I built a snowman and used him to balance myself to stand on my head in the snow. Well, snowmen make terrible support and I ended up under a pile of snow. My mother rushed out and dug me out and all I could see when I looked up at her were her blue eyes and very big belly. I suddenly was full of awe and wonder. I no longer worried because I realized my mom would always be there for me and I would have to be there for my new baby “sister.”
This writing class is one of my favorite places to be. Due to many family things – some good, some not so good, but all a part of life – I had a wonderful Labor Day with many family members in New Jersey. I returned to Philadelphia on September 5th.
After such a great Labor Day, I had to attend a funeral the next day, which was Friday, September 6th. The next day my sister had to go to the hospital and within twenty-four hours, my sister passed away.
My children took me to North Carolina. It was a Home Going Service and a family and friends reunion, at which time there was sadness and joy.
A Sad, Sad Time
A sad time was when my son-in-law died. He died on my granddaughter’s birthday, August 15th. I had no way to comfort her. She kept asking me why I had no answer for her. Everyone at one time or another has a sad time. I had so many sad times. By losing seven brothers and one sister. Now it’s only me and my twin left. But we have our grand and great-grandkids. We know God has the last say. After sad times, there are happy times.