rosemuse: (NY - Taki - Silence)
[personal profile] rosemuse
In further examining this whole... thing... I think I'm just incredibly stressed and anxious this week due to my aunt's death.

Technically, she wasn't related to us by blood. She was my mom's best friend for about twenty years and we more or less adopted her into the family when I was a kid. She was part of the inter-tribal Native American group we were involved in and she was a really wonderfully patient, thoughtful and funny person. (She was Blackfoot and African American.) She babysat my sister and I a lot, too. And she always encouraged me with my art, which I've always been really grateful for. (And she was always totally fine with us calling her 'Aunt Marsha'.)

She moved to Washington and became a therapist when I was about thirteen or fourteen, so none of us communicated quite as much. She'd always seemed like a hard-working and resilient person, too. And I'm glad my mom had her as a friend - because she was a great influence and always lifted my mom's spirits a lot and helped her with some therapy. Every time we'd get a card from Marsha, she'd always remind us to smile.

So it kind of came as a shock when Marsha announced half a year ago that she had lung cancer. She'd always smoked for as long as I'd known her, and, while I worried a little about her, I guess I was always vaguely under the impression that it couldn't ever happen to her????

She'd been doing better for a little while, but last month, her tumors returned and spread really viciously. In her last e-mail to my mom about a week or two ago, she remained really upbeat, though, and reminded us to smile. And then the next e-mail we got was from her longtime boyfriend, telling us she'd died in hospice.

It was really upsetting. And I wasn't really sure how to react to it? Because I associated more of my memories of her with my childhood? I felt more sad than I expected to feel. And, over the past several days, I've found myself randomly tearing up when I think about her. But I didn't really want it to drag me down, either?

My mom took it really hard. Surprisingly, it was on the exact morning my mom had decided to get her hair cut at a salon. She'd never really followed tradition to a T, but, in most Native American cultures, cutting your hair very short is a symbol of mourning. It had almost grown to her elbows, but she got it chopped off just above her shoulders. And then (HAIR TRIGGER WARNING) took what was left over and went for a walk on her own and let it drift down the nearby river. The entire day was really overcast and gloomy, too, which was kind of shitty. She came home and cried a lot and it was pretty hard to see. So, later, we brewed up some herbal tea and just talked about our memories.

My relationship with my mom has always been incredibly complicated. She's taught me a lot, and we have had some nice times together in spite of the struggles and her abuse. But I'm just glad that we all had Marsha in our lives and that she'd always tried to be positive and that she'd always been thoughtful and caring and wanted the best for us.

It's just. Idk. I still feel really sad about it. Knowing someone I cared about was slowly dying from a terrible disease.

Idk. I'm rambling tons, now. And I'm sorry this is so poorly written. I'm a tad sleep deprived.

Just that. Someone so close going again is hard. And I didn't expect that anxious jumpyness and tired sadness again. It's not bad to an extent that I feel really depressed, though, and I know it will heal with time. It does help to write about this, too.

For the most part, right now, I'm trying to remember all of the fun and great things about Marsha and the good and really heart-warming memories I have of her. And I definitely think she'd want that, too.

Date: 2015-01-26 06:50 am (UTC)
pseudo_tsuga: ([Star Trek] comfort)
From: [personal profile] pseudo_tsuga
Rose, I'm so sorry you had to lose what sounds like a great influence in your life.

August 2017

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