A couple of folks sprang for pizza today and we were just finishing up when I spotted my cousin Mo and her son in the waiting room. I figured they were getting blood drawn and I'd stop by to visit in a moment. I could tell by the look on my friend's face when she fetched me that the news wasn't good. When I got there, she was red faced and crying telling me that her sister, my KY cuz died this morning. It took about fifteen seconds as I circled her neck to ask "Debbie what?" By then we were both a howling mess and took it to another room so as not to startle anybody. Nic had both of our backs as we heaved with sobs over losing OUR sister, not just hers. Since I never had a sister in the house, I adopted my two cousins as sisters. We're all very different but alike in ways that count like loyalty to family and friends. Both of them adore my mom just like everybody else in the world.
I went by to tell her the news and sat at her feet like a child with my head on her lap while she rubbed it. She felt my pain and I felt hers. And she declared "...i just don't know what.." Every time Deb and Ronnie came for a visit they brought canned vegetables and stuff for daddy from their huge garden. She was particularly close to her own father who died at about her age and was just inducted into the Band Leader's Hall of Fame or something this past weekend. Debbie's hub has been quite sick himself and I think the added burden of caring for him was too much with her own health problems. She always told us she would die by 55. Only a year off girl..not bad for a flute player.
A broken heart is something that eventually mends and forgets the pain of loss and suffering. Knowing that each day may be our last is a good enough reason to just dispense with the small stuff and tell it like it is. That's something that I had come to respect about her over the years..she told it like it was, period. We were in band together with Jimbo and while she was a talented flute player I was the dork who couldn't play anything but the chimes but loved hanging out in the percussion section...always had a weakness for drummers.
My fondest memories are of camping with she and her family as a child and then again as an adult with our own kids. A very talented framer and antique collector she was always up for a yard sale with a treasure. Our grandmother's dining room table and chairs were supposed to go home with her next time they brought a trailer. In the blink of an eye ya'll. In the blink of an eye. We talked almost daily and yesterday was unusually light and funny as we discussed Ronnie's latest PT result and what was on the dinner menu. This woman could COOK dude! And she learned a lot of it from my mama.
Ours was not a relationship where we said the L word a lot but knew that it was there, an unspoken bond that was part sister and part keeper of the faith. When her father died, I was seated like one of the "girls" next to Aunt Granny. The entire church was filled with folding chairs in the aisles to boot. I'm saying...he was an icon. Deb's service won't be all uppity like that I'm sure because that's not her way either. I will miss her honesty and humor...our political rants together and discussions about work and grandkids and stuff. Familiarity with stories so there's no explanation needed. The kind of stuff where you "had to be there." There is nothing like that feeling.
Rest in peace Debbie ^j^