Friday, March 11, 2011

A passing


Those of you who have followed my blog these last years may remember that my older sister had open heart surgery in September of 2008. While it may have repaired her heart in some ways, she really never fully recovered. Suffering a series of cruel maladies, including dysphagia, she has slowly dwindled down to a shadow of who she once was.

A little over a month ago, she was admitted to her local hospital for pneumonia. At that time, they inserted a feeding tube in her stomach, to try to get some nutrition into her and see if her body could once again thrive. It really wasn't successful (she was down to a mere 87 lbs.). After weeks and weeks of ups and downs, she lost her battle with life in the early hours of Wednesday morning.

She was many things to many people. She was my parent's first born child. She was a big sister to two sisters and a brother. She was a mom to two sons, a wife to her husband for 52 years, an aunt to her nieces and nephews, an educator, voracious reader, avid birder, and champion of all things related to protecting wildlife and habitats. She loved sailing and spent many years, along with her husband and sons, breeding, selling and racing Siberian huskies. She was, unlike yours truly, very shy.

Yesterday I told my 5 year old grandson about her passing. He asked where she will be now. I told him she lives on in our hearts, and is watching over all of us. I know there may be more questions later, but for now, he is content with that, and I must be, as well. I think it will be some time before the reality sinks in after all these weeks of extreme worries.

She leaves behind a loving husband, many nieces and nephews, a heart broken sister, and her dog, Max. While we have to know her passing was a relief from her horrible suffering, it's not easy. It will take a little bit of work, but we'll have to all start focusing on the good times and keep her spirit alive with smiles and laughs.

I know she wouldn't want it any other way.

18 comments:

Kim said...

I'm so sorry for your loss. It is never easy. I hope your family draws strength from each other at this time.
Kim

Orange Sink said...

I am so sorry to hear about the passing of your sister. You describe her as a wonderful human being. May your heart heal in time and the love and memories give you and your family strength.
Hugs,
Cathy G

Robyn said...

So sorry to hear about your loss Martie. My thoughts are with you and your family. Love, Robyn

island sweet said...

i've been thinking of you. xxx

sallyrae said...

Oh Martie. My heart aches for your loss. May your sister be at peace and you keep comfort in the good memories. Blessings to the family.
XX

Penni said...

I wish I had just the right thing to say; I join your friends in mourning along with you. It ain't easy, but may the painful memories of the recent past be eased by all the sweet memories...

Carol from Panama said...

I have been thinking about you and I knew you were taking a break from blogging. It's Sunday morning and I was browsing my blogroll over coffee and decided to stop by Taos Sunflower to see if you had posted anything recently - and I found this sad news.

Oh Marti I am so sorry to hear about your sister's death. From your description she sounded like an exceptional woman. My heart goes out to you and the family that loved her. She will live in your hearts forever - her memory will never fade - trust me.

Abrazos

Taos Sunflower said...

Thank you to all of you. It means a lot. XXXX

Poetrycompany said...

Dear Martie: Our hearts hurt with you at the loss of your sister. Our hearts celebrate with you that she is relinquished from her pain. May you feel our love & support for you & your family. Bob, Teresa & Halston

Ter'e said...

Martie:
God Bless You and your family. It sounds like you had wonderful memories of your sister. That is such a blessing, in itself.

May the days of moving forward, lessen the pain in your heart and revive all the memories of happier times. She'll always be in your heart.

Vaya con Dios, mi amiga!

Taos Sunflower said...

Thanks, Ter'e. It is yet another of life's changes. I'm still pretty much feeling like a zombie over all of this right now, but think once the memorial is past, and some other things done at their home, maybe the healing can begin a little. XOXO

Sandra said...

Dear Marti: My prayers for strength and Guidance are with you and your beautiful family. She is indeed in your hearts and watching all from above. Thank you for coming here and sharing in your time of greiving.
Blessings, Sandra in AZ

GRATEFUL HEART DESIGNS said...

Oh my gosh... so sad to read that you have been going through so much. Sending my prayers and love to you in this time of sadness.

Taos Sunflower said...

Thank you Sandra, thank you Grateful Heart: Having the good thoughts of all of you truly has helped me get through this. I'll be back sooner than later; our lives continue.

Deanne said...

thinking of you Martie, Blessings

swamericana said...

I'm so sorry, Marti. I am thinking of you and all your sister meant to you. Brenda sends her sympathies, too. I'm so sorry. -- Jack

Taos Sunflower said...

Thanks, Jack. I've been so worried about my brother in law, I fear I haven't started my own grieving yet..she was 21 years my senior and with her, went a lot of family history and memories, along with every other wonderful thing about her. You would have liked her...she was, for her long carrer, a teacher of 11th grade AP US History classes. She was quite the intellect...graduated first in her class from Pasadena City College and then went on to be a star graduate at UCLA. She was the first in our family to attend college (let alone just graduate from high school)...a star who rose from a humble, working class family. She has definitely left a hole in our hearts that will never be filled.

RuthieJ said...

Oh Martie, I'm so sorry to learn of your sister's passing. You wrote a lovely tribute to her (I can only hope that my younger sister has such nice things to say about me someday).
Hugs from Minnesota!