June 20, 2013

And Then There Was One

Am I the only person in the world who HATES funerals?  I mean absolutely DETESTS them???

Especially when it comes to extended family.

And more specifically, my MOM's extended family.

It just brings back wayyyy too many memories.

My Aunt Mae passed away this week.

She was such a neat lady.  I used to hang out at her house and play Legos, walk around the cow pastures to the creek, and EAT.

My favorites were her creamed corn and her homemade dill pickles.  Yumm-O!!!

She was like my mom's very best friend.  They would spend HOURS on the phone with her almost daily (and they lived less than 10 miles apart--just go see her for crying out loud!!)
Aunt Mae is on the left.  "Cottontop" was my mom :)

She's had Alzheimer's disease for nearly 8 years now, and for about 7 of those years, she didn't even know anyone in the family.  Her mom (my grandmother) went through the exact same ordeal, but she lay in a nursing home not knowing anyone or anything for 17 years.  Such a cruel disease and such a horrible way to live.

The neat thing about Aunt Mae, though, is that several years before she got sick (I was actually expecting Tyler, so about 11 years ago), I got a phone call telling me that I had to go to Warlick's church that night for their Sunday service.  

Apparently, Aunt Mae had decided that morning that she just needed to be ABSOLUTELY CERTAIN that things were right with the Lord, and she was being baptized that night.  What a blessing that was to watch.

She was the last sister in Mom's family to pass on.  There is only the  one baby brother left.  

It can be so frustrating to a not-even-40-year-old that all of my family is gone.  Poof.  Just like that.

I guess that is a definite downside to waiting until you are older to have children.  (I came along when my mom was 40.)  So many of the memories that my brother & sister, aunts & uncles, cousins, etc. have to carry with them, I have no knowledge of.

I still remember some things, though.  Especially the late night homemade ice cream sessions at Grandma Arney's house.  And playing baseball in the front yard.  And trying to convince the cousins to let me play with them (I was younger by a good ten years, so that  didn't go over so well.) and when they agreed, all they did was play hide-n-seek in the dark and scare the daylights out of me!

I try hard not to live with regrets.  I have to ask for God's mercy in that area many, many times.

But it just kills me that my kids aunt and uncle could be their grandparents, and there are only 2 grandmothers (on Randy's side) for them to know.

While I sat at Aunt Mae's funeral, it was like living my mom's all over again.  So I sit there, tears streaming, and blubbering like an idiot, with Tyler looking at me like I just walked off of Star Trek.

He doesn't remember Aunt Mae.  I guess the last time she saw him, he was only about 3 years old.  (I didn't want him to remember her in the state she was in at the nursing home.)  So I guess he was wondering who this person was and why suddenly she meant so much to me.

Just one more reminder to make the most of every day and to tell those you love over and over how much they mean to you.  

Enjoy Heaven, Aunt Mae. . .I will be there to see you soon!

And, just like that, then there was one. . .