Rest in Peace

On Monday, my mother lost a brother.

I didn’t know my uncle very well. I was (very) slightly closer to his ex-partner, who shared his life for a very long time and who is an extremely warm person who always had a good word for me when we crossed path. And in the last few years I became closer to his two older daughters, mostly via blogs and email. So even though it is not really a loss for me, I am sad for them and for the entire family, and I hope they will find peace without their loved one.

My uncle was the second of nine siblings. His older brother was killed by cancer a few years ago. Now my mother is losing the second oldest of her siblings, and her youngest brother is ill with cancer with a rather grim prognostic. I can only imagine how hard it must be to see this happen to your family. In the case of my recently deceased uncle, he suffered from a long illness and there is some relief in the fact that he is finally pain-free. But he is about the same age as my father, so it’s hard not to imagine myself in the shoes of my cousins. It kept me up for a while last night. It reminded me that we are all growing older, that we are all going to die, and that waiting until “later” to do things we want to do may not be such a great idea.

What hit home even more is that one of my cousins lives overseas and will not be able to come to Montreal for her father’s funeral. It certainly makes me acutely aware of how far away from my family I am. Although I have been able to go home every year, I still cannot be as much part of their life as I would like to. And my children don’t know their maternal grandparents as well as I wish they did. As my son gets older, it’s easier for him to keep communication going with his grandmother in between visits, but still, it will never be the same than if he saw her week or even every month… and although I don’t really see a solution for now, it gives me food for thoughts.

My heart goes to my uncle’s family.

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