Death has not knocked on my door as it has for a lot of people I know. However, in the past six months it has knocked three times to let me know people who I regarded as my family are removed from my life. I often wondered how people dealt with death. It is so final. Is it welcomed when one is suffering or you try to hold on to life?
She was an angel who had piercing blue eyes with long snow white hair. She was a Florida girl who by no choice of her own found her last days in Ooltewah, Tennessee to feed the deer in her back yard. She was feisty! She loved the Miami Heat and Dwayne Wade. She wore Miami Dolphin earrings. She loved me. Woe onto anyone who mistreated me. Five months after her death, I am still in denial. I have kept her cell-phone number and often listen to her message to me simply to hear her voice, a comfort to my ears. She was my mother, my grandmother, and my children's great grandmother. She mailed homemade cookies at Christmas and presents at birthday time to us. At 79, I wasn’t prepared for her to die. She was my Doris.
He was large in stature, loud, yet loving and kind. He believed in you when you didn't believe in you. He was my brother, yet he wasn't my mother or father’s child. Our grandmothers were sisters. He suffered a tragic accident which culminated into a domino effect. When I think of him, I think of the person responsible for the accident. Does she know how many lives she affected? He came from a large family, many siblings, nieces and nephews, children and cousins. He remains in my contact information. I occasionally reread his texts. He was my cousin Cecil.
Doris… yes another Doris was laid to rest recently. A former coworker, who left the workplace on disability due to breast cancer, she too had beautiful piercing eyes. She was also just as feisty. I often heard from caregivers of cancer victims the physical effects of cancer. I saw it for the first time. It devastated me. I vowed not to ever see her again and she understood. I called her every day. At times she was guarded by her family and her faithful sister-in-law….rightfully so. I admired her. She held on as long as she could until this terrible disease took her away. She was my non-biological sister.
While I know listening to Doris’s voice messages and rereading old text from the brother I never had won’t change my demise; I choose to deny their death until I can come to terms with their passing. I find solace in knowing that I was loved by them and in life I demonstrated my love for them and they knew it. It is often said that "they are in a better place." Until then, denying their death is a comfort to my soul.
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