Written by: Ms. O
As I write this, my heart is still in grieving mode. I know it will turn to joy for the outcome…but for now it is grief. My aunt…by marriage but I never stopped claiming her after the divorce…passed away over the weekend. This was my mother in laws sister…the eldest of the three kids. (I never met Sam, the middle brother because he died at a very young age.)
These two sisters were like two peas in a pod. It did not matter that they had two very distinct and separate personalities…when they were together they were in sync. They got so silly when they were together, it was nearly impossible to get a decent picture without one of them laughing out loud or making a silly face…and we had to retake it or deal with it.
When Frannie, my mother in law, passed away, we continued to stay in touch with Aunt Mary and Uncle Jack. Each Christmas her daughter so graciously shared her parents with us for lunch…to catch up…to hug…to laugh a lot…and break bread…more like tortilla chips since we always chose Mexican food. She was the remnant of the Davis family. She, for us, was the bit of Frannie we could hold on to. Now…..that is over…but as my heart grieves I know this…she (and Frannie) will live on…when I pass on the love they showered on me…so I ask for your indulgence of time to share with you… so that you may also glean from this woman:
We lived in Midland for five years…the same town that she and Uncle Jack lived in…and she had a key to my house…for those just in case far too often times when I locked myself out. I truly think she would wait until she knew I wasn’t home…and let herself into my house…don’t get freaked out…to leave me surprises. I would come home from running errands and there on the counter would be something she picked up at a craft show… or a baked good that filled the house with such a welcome home smell…and a note in her very distinct handwriting….as if I had any question who my “gifter” was.
She loved to bake…and she could bake like no other. Christmas (although she baked year round) was like a smorgasbord of delight…and she loved to share. She was so very slender so the baking was not consumed by just her…although she did like her sweets. Her intent of baking was to give it away. I have stained overly used recipe cards of a few of my favorites of she typed or wrote out for me that I refuse to write over again …because the wear and tear tells me how much I love what it creates.
Last…but truly not least….is the love that she had for her husband Jack. I had heard the story so many times but it never got old. They had just a few dates…he was in the service and lived on base…when they decided to run off and get married. That was over 72 years ago….yes, you read that right…72. Jack was 22 and Mary was 17 on the day they wed back in May of 1941. One of Uncle Jack’s favorite lines when someone asked if all the years were happy and how did they stay together was this: “I never thought of divorcing her…maybe murder a time or two…but never divorce.” They had seen their share of joys and hardship…and stayed dedicated to each other.
“No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.” 1 John 4:12
Death does not have the final say so…especially for Aunt Mary. Her random acts of kindness have always made me more conscience to think of others when I am “out and about.” Her recipes are the source of great joy for me and my daughter Mandy, as we bake her recipes together. And this love that she and Jack had for each other…this dedication to “stick it out”….is what my prayer will always be for my own children. I am sure she is giving God an earful right now (that woman loved to talk)….rejoicing in Heaven…and setting up a table of goodies for when we meet her there.
Until we meet again…. I sit in the between of my grief in losing her and rejoicing for her as she takes her place in the kingdom…