Last Christmas – I start thinking about Christmas about a month before and what cards I will send to my nearest and dearest. The list is getting smaller each year. Because as I age and the years go on, people I care about are dying at an alarming rate. I noticed it more this year I think because my brother-in-law died in June and my sister followed him in October. Her death was the more shocking because it was totally unexpected. She had a heart attack, her first one ever and that was it. Where he had lung cancer for several months, which was short enough time but we still had time to prepare ourselves, if one can ever do that.
I was recently thinking about my best friend, Rose Marie because we send each other cards at Christmas and add a few notes to tell each other what has been happening in our lives. We went to catholic school together and graduated together, and after graduated, we partied together until she met her husband to be.
We were still close and the three of us would still go out dancing together. We loved to dance. We continued to go out together until I moved away to another state. They got engaged and then married. I also got married and started having children. Rose Marie was God Mother to my second child. Then I moved across the country to California.
So cards and letters were how we communicated. I went back to our hometown for reunions, at least three times, so we did see each other on those times but basically we kept in touch by the Christmas cards.
The Christmas before last, Rose Marie told me that she and her husband, (who have been married now forever it seems)are still going strong and they have a new great-grandchild who is two years old. I told her that I was doing fine, still painting when I find the time and the family was well, whether that was true or not.
The Christmas before that, I sent out the cards I had painted and received one from Rose Marie as usual. She had some minor surgery but was recuperating well. Her husband was also doing well and they were both, “still kicking,” as she put it. She mused about whether we would ever see each other again. I wondered as much myself but didn’t put it into words. I doubt it very much though.
The Christmas before that, I received the usual card from Rose Marie and she talked about the reunion a few years before that fell through because not only were there so few of us left, but of the ones that were, very few were interested in going to a reunion. I wasn’t sure I was up to going to that one anyway. Flying isn’t what it used to be. People going through your luggage, scanning you with wands and telling you to step aside so you can be searched. I used to enjoy flying but not anymore.
Rose Marie and I are still communicating by Christmas card and we pretty much know that we will not see each other again but we will always be friends.
For today’s post on Writing 101: Write a series of anecdotes that have a common theme.