Friday, December 14, 2007

Life Changes

I've finally got my shoes on the right feet.

Sounds like a personal problem right? Well, I have learned some very hard lessons over these past few months, ones I thought I couldn't bounce back from. Seems like normal, life likes to throw a curve ball at you, to see if you are paying attention.
Most of you already know a lot of the stuff that has gone on.... hubby getting sick and going to Germany, other crap.... but there was a life change that I just went through that you don't know about - one that affected me deeply, shook me to the core of my being.
My Aunt Anne, my rock, my lesson teacher, my best friend, passed away on November 26th.

She was a strong, independent woman. The kind of person who would say exactly what she thought, when she thought it. When my parents divorced, my family became extended. Anne moved in with us, in order to help my mom and help finish rearing my sister and I.
She loved us like we were her children, and we loved her like she was our mother. She taught us independence, loyalty, stubborness and love. She would give you the shirt off her back if you needed it, never once thinking about herself and what she might need. She would scrape the barrel clean if she thought it would help you in any way, shape or form.
Anne taught me things that I never thought I would learn. She always made sure I was successful at anything I tried to do, and she was a very hard judge of character. Anne never really liked any of the guys I dated. She always felt like I was selling myself short, and only dating a person because they were there. Except for James. She loved James.
Sometimes she could be judgemental, but that was only when she had my best interest at heart. She didn't want me to leave, and any time I spoke with her she was always asking when I was coming home to see her. She cried more the day I left than my mom did. Like I said, she was a Mom to me.

In the past year, Anne started to get sick. Her diabetes had started to get worse, her kidneys were not functioning properly, and she had started to get cataracks. See, Anne was a large woman and people knew something wasn't right when she started to lose a lot of weight. But she had been going to the doctor and it all was being taken care of. (My sister is thankful that I hadn't seen Anne in a while, because that way my memories of her are vibrant ones, and not ones from her illnesses.) I talked to Anne quite a few times, and it broke my heart that I could not be there for her while she was going through all of this.
The coroner said she died from a heart attack a day or two before she was found. She was all alone. I feel relief because I know she is no longer in pain, or suffering with her illnesses, but I feel guilty because I can't remember the last time I spoke to her. I had gotten caught up with feeling sorry for myself because of the extension and James not being home when he should. I had gotten caught up with planning something and had gotten caught up with just normal daily activities, that I didn't think to call her to see how she was doing. I feel guilty because I know when she passed, I was out shopping at 4 in the morning that Sunday trying to get a freaking $20 gift card free. I feel guilty because I was buying a new Fossil purse while she was helpless in her time of need.

Like I said, I've finally got my shoes on the right feet, and now all the pain that is left is the pain in my selfish heart for having lost her. I wrote her a letter, that was read at her Memorial. (See, her oldest sister felt it necesary to get all the arrangements done quickly, and thus I could not attend.) It has been hard, but day by day I am getting through, by the Grace of God I am getting through, and with Psalm 23 I am getting through.

"Today I say Goodbye to one of my Best Friends. I say Goodbye to the one person I thought would always be there. Annie was one of the toughest and strongest women I know. You either loved her or hated her. I LOVED HER. She was hard on me when needed, and helped to teach me how to be independent, how to not worry about what others think. She taught me how to be stubborn, and to ask questions. Annie loved me unconditionally, the type of love normally found in parents and children. That's because, to Annie I was one of her daughters ~ I will love her forever, I will miss her forever.
Heaven received a New Angel, and she will always be with me. I Love You Annie."

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