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Our Own Kind of Coping

February 29, 2012

The phrase that everyone keeps using is “Everyone deals with grief in their own way.” Being strong, keeping busy, taking care of Granny, keeping the outlying family informed, doing work. The various groups of family members form, break apart, and reform, like molecules in an unstable reaction.

It’s all unstable right now. Last night Moose drove two hours so that he could be at his aunt’s bedside as she passed. I went along for the ride and waited for word at his cousin’s house. Her roommate and friends waited with me for the few hours before word came. For once, insomnia was my friend and I was awake when he texted that she had passed.

Today has been all about finding our own ways of coping. She had been fighting leukemia, and despite everything, I think we all thought she would make it. She was lucky to catch it early,we said. She’s got a good chance, we said. In the end it wasn’t the leukemia that took her. But it might as well have been.

I didn’t know her as well as I would have liked to. She was an amazing woman, with a bold, infectious laugh. Though she had no children of her own, she was like a mother to my husband and his cousins. And it seemed like she could take on anything and be amazing at it. When she asked if she could help with my wedding, I gladly handed over the paper flower bouquet idea I’d been toying with but thought I’d never get around to. I expected simple origami. Instead, I got nearly life-like paper lilies.

It’s quiet now. People have split away for a while to have time to themselves. Time to cope by themselves. In a few hours, the family will reform again around the table, and we’ll find ways to cope together. In the meantime, I’m baking. Dozens of muffins and cookies, cooking and cleaning my way through this quiet time, fixing the one pain that is easiest to heal.

It’s just my way of coping.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. Crazy Lady permalink
    March 1, 2012 9:02 am

    Very nice. I would love to see a post of those lilies when/if you get a chance ❤

  2. Joanna permalink
    March 1, 2012 9:36 am

    My condolensces to Moose and his family.

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