Family Matters, Plain Speaking

March 22, 2021

I was searching out what I call “good post material” this morning, and, haftasay, there’s quite a bit.  Some of the links from Wikipedia:

  • 1784 – The Emerald Buddha is moved with great ceremony to its current location in Wat Phra Kaew [on the grounds of the Grand Palace in Bangkok], Thailand.
    I’ve not seen the real one, but I’ve seen the replica, which is in Chiang Rai.
  • 1794 – The Slave Trade Act of 1794 bans the export of slaves from the United States, and prohibits American citizens from outfitting a ship for the purpose of importing slaves.
  • Good idea.  That long ago.  Really?
  • 1933 – Cullen–Harrison Act: President Franklin Roosevelt signs an amendment to the Volstead Act, legalizing the manufacture and sale of “3.2 beer” (3.2% alcohol by weight, approximately 4% alcohol by volume) and light wines.
    Big of him.
  • 2013 – At least 37 people are killed and 200 are injured after a fire destroys a camp containing Burmese refugees near Ban MaeThailand.
    And that.  The situation has not improved much since.
  • 2020 – Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi announces the country’s largest ever self-imposed curfew, in an effort to fight the spread of COVID-19.
  • 2020 – Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis announces the country’s first ever self-imposed curfew, in an effort to fight the spread of COVID-19.
    And here we are.

But for me, at this moment, and in this month, it’s a time of remembering and reflection.  March 2021 is the twenty-first anniversary of the death of the late Mr. Right’s first wife.  I wrote about her, and about the way in which we somehow, surprisingly, managed to make our fractured families whole, in my post, Amazing Grace.

It’s the month of my father’s birthday (he would have been 102 this year).

It’s the first anniversary of the month in which, after much struggle, I recognized and gave in to the inevitable, and began to move my husband of almost 40 years into a hospice program. (Curses on Covid 19, and how difficult that, on top of everything else, made our last months.  And blessings on our doctors, home health, and hospice providers who somehow made it all bearable, all the way up until the end, on July 3, 2020.  I’ll never forget the couple from the funeral home who showed up at about 5AM to take Mr. Right away for his final ceremonies.  They were human.  And kind.  And in defiance of all Fauci-esque protocols at the time, and maskless, we stood in the driveway and hugged each other and cried.  I will never forget that moment and how salvific, in a very bleak time, it was for me.)

And it’s the third anniversary of a conversation, and a decision made as a result, that somehow wrecked a beloved friendship, cost me dearly in financial and emotional terms (for reasons I’ve come to understand have very little to do with me. but everything to do with circumstances beyond my control, and with stupid, ignorant, malicious, and interfering others), but which has passed like water under the bridge at this point, disappearing  Into the West and no longer mattering (all that much, and only very rarely) to me:

Life goes on.  I think that’s the message that those who love us, even those beyond the grave, would like us to remember.

And so I try to.  And I hope and pray that all reading this who’ve had an equally, or even more difficult year that I have, can remember it too.  This too shall pass.  God Bless.


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