Greetings to all you wonderful people. So, here is where I would usually write about something fun or a funny experience or just about anything that I think you might find entertaining. And although I began my day with the idea in my head of what this post would be about, a phone call from a small town in Iowa wiped that thought from my head. Instead I am all consumed, thinking of the most wonderful and lively individual that I have ever had the good fortune to know. Her name was Virginia Atkinson and she was my Aunt.
I speak of Virginia in the past tense because, as you may have guessed, she has put aside this mortal coil. She left quietly from her hospice bed this very day. No pomp, no parade, no women tearing at their clothes in grief, wailing for her passing. Only the silence respectful tears of those few that were witness, mourned her departure…
…..AND THAT JUST AIN’T RIGHT!
She was the life of the party, the cheerful word. Always a smile on her face and never a bad word to anyone. She was comfort, yet the firm and encouraging hand when the situation called for it. She was a Rockwell caricature, a citizen of Maybury and apple pie all rolled into one. But most of all, she was LOVE. She was everything an Auntie should be.
So let the church bells toll! Let the announcement be made that the brightest star in the sky has gone out! Let me run through the streets like a child, calling her name until I am breathless. Let this day be marked in history and may it read that someone of unique character has left us. That person was Virginia Atkinson.
It shames me now to think of the time I let pass between us, when I promised to visit and never arrived. When I didn’t pick up that phone when her name sprang to mind. How easy it was for me to forget her while she was still here. “Well, next year I’ll have the money to fly out to see you,” I’d say. But a year stretched on into the next and then the next one and she grew old and sickness came to her. Now she is gone and I have only myself to blame for the time I squandered away. Such is my burden to bere.
But I will not be one to leave you on a sad note! The suffering I endure from her loss will never over shadow the joy she brought to my life. The joy that fills my heart with each remembered moment we shared.
I hold my glass up high, delivering up this toast.
“To you, Virginia. You taught us more than we knew, you gave us more than we could have wanted, you made us better than we were. May God’s arms welcome you to him.”
Peace ~ K.L. Parry