Someone started chatting with me on facebook last night and let me know that my former neighbor, MeeMaw, was in a hospice. My neighbor had lived near me for decades...until last year when she moved in with her with of her kids and their family. She's in her late sixties and is currently 'eaten up with cancer.' I immediately went up to see her today and brought flowers. My mother used to always say to bring her flowers while she was alive to enjoy them, not when she's dead (usually in a conversation about someone's funeral.) Of course, I brought my mom lots of flowers (daisies) while she was alive and when she died, I didn't. ...I made sure I brought pretty happy flowers to my neighbor. I told her that I knew she liked narcissis (because we always brought her handfuls from our backyard when she lived next door) but since they weren't in season, I got different ones. She was unrecognizable. Emaciated. Weak. It's only a matter of time. I really like her and still miss her being next door. :(
On the way out, her son talked with us and I had a couple of questions that I didn't want to ask while I was in her room. The plan is to make her as comfortable as possible, possibly let her return to her daughter's home...to die. Her son joked with us (we love using humor in uncomfortable situations) about how many other people he has seen that he knows in this hospice and how many pass away each day. As we are getting older, and so many people are passing away, he joked that we were moving up to the front of the line, so to speak.
My neighbor quit smoking five years ago (after several decades of smoking) and started walking. How unfair that she (and everyone who has cancer) don't have cures yet and that technology hasn't yet caught up with all the cancers of the world.
In addition, a very good aquaintance died this week as well (I didn't actually think of the consequences of joining the Red Hat Ladies that they would actually pass away.) Evelyn was 88 (but didn't look that old at all!)
Of course, I'm thinking of how precious life is and how much I need to savor each day.
My MIL and SIL (a cancer survivor)
Two women I've admired throughout the years.