On Saturday, just 2 minutes after a highly effective yoga session, I got a call from my dad. My dad almost never calls me unless there is a problem. And sadly, this time was no different.
I was blessed to have spent my college years living very near to my Grandmother's older sister and brother and their families. These were people that I had previously not gotten to know. It was an opportunity that allowed my family to reunite and draw near to one another again. It was a beautiful gift that we were all given.
Many of those people that I met and grew to treasure are no longer with us. And on Saturday afternoon, my dad was calling to let me know that my sweet, loving Great Uncle George was in the hospital and under comfort measures. Apparently, he developed a leaking aortic aneurysm. When he regained lucidity, he expressed his wish to not fight any longer. At 92 years old, I wholeheartedly believe that he earned the right to make that choice. My dad explained that he was no longer taking any fluids, and that nobody expected the ordeal to last very long.
And Sunday evening, my mom called to let me know that my Great Uncle had passed that morning. I had spent some time looking through family photos taken over the last decade of my Grandmother with her siblings, and then just her siblings with my dad and the others of his generation. My Great Uncle was the middle child, and I ache for my Aunt Deedee, the oldest of the three, and the only one remaining. I feel sad that my future children will never meet their Great Grandmother, or her brother, and feel their immense, undeniably unconditional love.
I wish that I could have made the time and found the funds to drag Ammon bodily out to Indiana/Ohio so that he could at least meet my Great Aunt and Uncle, given that my Grandmother passed soon after the two of us even met. She would have liked to know that her big brother and sister (they are the two in the above picture) had given my main squeeze the stamp of approval.
So to my dear Uncle George: I love you so, so much. The way that you loved your wife and your family set a true example to me of what kind of man I should seek for a future mate. I am glad I got to meet you, and spend time with you. I am so sorry I didn't make more time. I know that you are at peace, and for that I am truly filled with gratitude. I have missed you every day for a long while now, but now it will be in a different way. Give Aunt Billie and my Grandma some extra hugs when you see them for me, okay?