Wednesday, May 09, 2012
Like it's Your Last
I dug holes all around the yard to transplant a multitude of weeds, Lilly, Iris, Grape Hyacinth, Daffodil, Flowering Almond and Poppy. With each dig came the same discovery of exceptionally dry earth. Hopefully the plants will survive. Realistically, they are each invasive monsters that will not only thrive but take over where ever they take root.
Today is another gloomy, gray day. We have had rain off and on all day today, which is the second full day in a row of like conditions. This weather, overcast with intermittent drizzle yet mild and humid making the rain much more tolerable and welcome, sets a perfect mood for the day. Somber.
This, of course, is true only partially due to the weather. You see, today Cathy's grandma is being laid to rest and I am home with the kittens. Cathy flew west last night to attend the funeral. Although I didn't really have the privilege of spending much time with her, I could tell from our visits that she was a spirited and warm lady. She was always seemed to be smiling, at least whenever I can recall. That simple act speaks volumes about a person, and I would like to think that it was incredibly accurate. Based on the stories I've heard and the moving reflection Cathy wrote as well as the limited first hand experience, I think it reasonable.
Cathy has always had a close relationship with her grandma and spoke with her frequently on the phone. Over the past months she had taken to printing out cards with pictures of our gardens or the kittens or of bike racing and sent them so that her grandma would have something to open in the mail. The hope was simply to brighten her day, if only for a short while.
Cathy was able to travel west of Toronto last week, to the hospital that her grandma had been admitted to days earlier. She was able to visit with her on a good day and talk with her. It seems that we are rarely given, recognize or act upon an opportunity which may be the last. Ironic. I suspect despite our modern, everything-is-disposable world, that we tend to forgot that not everything can be replaced when it wears out. "There will always be another one to replace the current one" has become the modern mentality. Unfortunately that is not true in all cases and with the most precious of all things.
I can't express how happy I am that Cathy was both given that chance and that she took it despite the required hardship of making the journey. The truth is that enduring hardship only makes the experience that much more special, to everyone. I'm sure that Cathy's grandma recognized the effort that Cathy went through in order to make sure that she was able to spend some time with her and I'm sure that that recognition as well as the fact that she was able to see Cathy again, made her very, very happy.
She now has those wonderful memories, if only brief, to add to her collection. I missed out on that chance by one day with my grandmother and I can say for certain that I regret it deeply. At times, we forget how difficult it is for those we love and focus on how difficult it is for us to see them in dire straights. Cathy, however, did not make those mistakes and I am both happy for her and proud of her.
My heart goes out to Cathy and all of her family. Spring, as with all seasons really, is a transitional. This rain will spur new growth and new life and the inevitable emergence of summer. The gloom will eventually pass and will give way to the greatest treasure we may hold, memories. A moment is fleeting but the memories, they really are eternal.