Saturday, 24 December 2016
Time for remembering friends
Christmas, time for joy, but also time for grief and sadness. Sadness for those who are no longer with us. It's at times of jollity and happiness when you feel the pain the most.
Trudy was more than a friend to me, she and her husband David were my family. They sort of adopted me, when I arrived to Britain all those years ago. I met Trudy when she visited my hometown on the University exchange programme, and we corresponded with each other for a couple years before I came to England to study. How I loved those beautiful letters and cherished them. She also wrote to me when we later moved to the States, her homeland.
I'm a hoarder, and I never throw letters or cards, they are my history, the story of my life.
Many moons ago Trudy gave me a wonderful gift - a pendant with a portrait of Beatrice d'Este. I still keep the little box and a card it came with.
When I see that neat handwriting and read that note, I can almost hear Trudy's gentle voice:
You must have this! I got it in Rome when we took our first trip to Europe in 1973. It was made in a lovely shop near the Vatican. The lady is Beatrice d'Este. I have always left the label on the back.
Since you now have an Italian husband and because your little girl (when you have one someday) will be half Italian, I want this to be one of your family heirlooms.
Bless you always-
I never had that little girl, instead I have two boys, who are my alpha and omega. My nieces will have this pendant one day. I think Trudy would approve.
She died earlier this year. I was dreading that call from her daughter, but I knew it was inevitable. After David, Trudy's husband, died a couple of years earlier, she lost the will to live. She was getting thinner and having more and more health problems. I willed her to live, but it was a selfish desire. She was ready to go.
I hope that wherever she is now, she is reunited with her beloved David.
This will be the first Christmas without Trudy... I know your blessings are still with me, my dear friend, but I am missing you so much.
P.S. As I was editing this post, I asked my husband "What would be a better title than "Time for remembering friends"? Our son Eddie listened to our conversation and said: "Oh, I know, I know... How about "I wish you weren't dead; I wish you were alive, So you could eat and have lots of fun, And live a long life". Perhaps not really a title but a heartfelt homage, and it sums up my thoughts. I think Trudy would have liked it.