Dear Family and Friends,
Today they took her body away. As I was standing before her bed, waiting for the funeral ladies to come and load her body on to the gurnie, the thought occurred to me "Jeepers! She's still at it!" She's always been helping people, from the mentally handicapped people she served, to her friends and aquaintaces, in which ever form she could, from her nursing training for the mentally handicapped, to her healing touch practice, to her monetary contributions, to her moral support of friends and collegas, and so on and so forth... and here she is, going off to help some one (or more) to become a good doctor, or to help acquire some new understanding of the body... maybe... but at least give it a try.
They took her in a black herst, not the silver one she wanted. I told her that it would have been to expensive, but I promised her that she WILL get her second exit wish. After a year of her body traveling around in the university system, doing whatever it is that her body is going to be doing, it will be back to us in the form of ashes, and she made me promise that they would be taken in an urn, in the front basket of her bicycle, and sprayed out on some place of our choosing... AND everyone that comes will also be on bikes. I told her I would put Genny's (our dog) basket on the back of the bike and Genny would also come along, and she thought it was a good idea, so... her friends coming on bikes won't be difficult, the Netherlands is bike country, and we will be spreading her ashes on a moor nearby to which she liked to go often. She'll like that. I'll let you know when that happens.
Meanwhile this afternoon I talked with Jessica and her husband, and they were asking me how I was feeling, and made me realize that I wasn't feeling anything. On the afternoon our house doctor came to check on us and also asked me how I was feeling... I told him I was kind of numb... I was just not feeling anything. I asked Marcia if that was normal... she said it was... and then made a joke about how they were coming to take me away.. ha, ha...
Anyway, I did remember that a couple of times last night I did feel the empty space in my heart that she left, and it hurt, but I went to sleep and it went away. I seem to live in moments. Some of them are good, they feel good, others are forgettable, they are just there and I forget about them, and some are downright shitty and they stink. And it seems like what we are trying to do is to have a predominance of the good moments and not too many of the bad ones, which brings me to something I've been wanting to write about for a long time... and I can say it now because I know that she won't mind that I talk about it. She's in a place of Bliss and stuff like this just don't mean a hoot!, so...
As you probably suspect, these letters I've been sending you are pretty much putting "our best foot forward", yeah? But you should know that it hasn't been all that clean and neat all the time. There's been a lot of tempers lost, and anger, and dissapointment, and all sorts of emotional exchanges... It has trucked me how easily we hurt each other when we are thrown in to a stressful situation, even with in a loving family as this... even with no intention of doing so.
Many times she cried to me, in anger and frustration, after she got the impression from me or Marcia or Douwe, without any intention to give such impression, that she would rather go dead, right now, so she could cease to be a burden to us. I took much time to convince her that she was not a burden... or for me to change the attitude that gave her that impression. I know that Marcia changed, even without talking about it. This last months she's showed, reaffirmed, Margreet that she loves her very much. And Margreet has appreciated it.
Many times she was angry with me because I couldn't do the things exactly as she wanted them... She, being the Virgo perfectionist... things that she had been in complete control at an earlier time, such as organizing a trip, or folding the clothes that are going in to a drawer...the clothing on the closet didn't all face the right direction... the drawer with t-shirts had a stack of shirts with long sleeves AND short sleeves. I don't now... I could never get it quite right... I don't think I was INTO it... I took me a long time, but I DID get it... (I haven't heard a blip about it in a long time)
She would make me vary angry with her "Dutchy" stuborness about how to do things... "What, in heaven's name, difference does it make if that shirt is facing the other direction?!"... no, her sense of order would be completely violated, so... it HAD to be the other way.
OK... I don't know...I just never got into it... this sort of details... I guess my feet have always been a bit off the ground... not quite all here... it's just that she never noticed... she always did it herself and always came out right... only I had to do it now... and she realized what a klutzs I am... so she was pissed at me many times... then I would get angry and respond in kind... No, it wasn't pretty all the time.
But it is good that I live in small chunks of time... There were other times that were just simply magnificent. I remember one time, after she'd had one of her "I want to be dead!" outbursts, I woke up in the middle of the night and she was crying.. She had her hand on my face, and she was telling me how much she hated yelling at me, and that she knew I was trying my best, and so on and so forth. At that moment, with her hand on my face, THE WORLD WAS RIGHT WITH ME! I was the richest man on Earth!
Those moments make all others bearable... and I am thankful for them.
Seeing how easily we hurt each other, even without intentions, when we are throughn into a stressful situations, like a brain tumor in the family, made me think of the world family at large and how we react collectively in hurtful ways. (Hey! Bear with me... I can't help it. I always project my perception on to the macrocosm. "As below, so above"... After all, the name of my first boats was "Rosinante"... I'm always charging giants in the shape of windmills... can't help it, it's in my genes)
Anyway... the "brain tumor" in the larger family is this "peak oil" thing into which we are coming. This is a deadly event to the current economic system and those in power are reacting to it in a hurtful way... or we could react to it as a family and search for common solutions.
As the photo making the rounds in the Internet, depicting a demonstration in Texas with a woman holding a banner reading "Kill the rag heads and take their oil" suggests, it is ONE way of responding to the situation. Another would be for all of us to talk about it and find out a common solution that will help all the people of the Earth, not just a few. And you know the motive for what is happening now is oil, from the simple fact that THAT is the only reason that is not discussed in the "free press". Every other reason is discussed "ad naseum" EXCEPT for oil, the only strategic motive for such a war. Like a magician on stage, creating all sorts of motions and devices to distract us from the hidden card on the sleeve, we are treated to a continuous reasons for going to war, always changing since none of them are true... until people begin to wake up to the lies and realizing what is going on.
Thus, we have a chance to behave like a family. The time for "separate nations" is long past. The time for the "human family" is here, and we either learn to behave like a family or we die.
We are going to need each other more than ever.
Sorry to drag you into this kind of talk, but I have to put down what is going though my head and mind, or it will dissapear into eternity and I will miss it.
Anyway, I think "acting like a family" is something that we need to learn. It's not something that comes natural... or we've forgotten it and now must re-learn.
Here, in my microcosm, we are learning well. Marcia prepared Arianna for her Oma's death very well. They talked about it and read children s books about it. When she passed on, at 1:04 am, Marcia had Arianna woken up to come and say goodbye to Oma, and she did it very well. This morning she helped bring the gurney into the huisje and watch while her Oma was placed on it She's taken it very well. She knows that she won't be seeing her any more, and she knows that her Oma has become an Angel. After we went for a walk to the forest and looked at a multitude of mushrooms that is exploding all over the place. She would have like that. I think we will do OK.
It's very late and I'm very tire.. and I just heard her telling me to get off my soap box and go to sleep... OK, OK, she's right.
Be in peace.
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