Yesterday hit me like a ton of bricks. I knew I’d be thinking of my sister Jeanie as I had been all week long, but in the morning, I could hardly manage to get myself out of bed. Yesterday marked three years since Jeanie breathed her last breath. I slept in (on a beautiful sunny day) and then, when I did get up, I got out my photos of Jeanie and looked at them, studying the details of each photo as if looking for cryptic hints for answers as to why she got sick, why she suffered for so long, and why she had to die prematurely. I cancelled a morning gathering with friends. I felt a great big fat emptiness.
The emptiness felt inconsolable until I got a few reaching-out texts from Jeanie’s family. Her son Vince sent a sweet photo of his two daughters and texted, “She’s the reason for this.” His adorable girls’ smiles fill out the tiny frame of my phone. Later, John’s wife Jenna sent a photo of their almost 5 week-old little girl in momma-Jenna’s arms. June Rae’s chubby milk-cheeks and infant smile fill the screen as she is happily snuggled to her momma’s heart. These texts put everything into perspective and reminded me that Jeanie’s life continues in her sons’ lives and in her grandchildren.
Yesterday evening, I went to Don and Simone’s for dinner. We ate outside, surrounded by POPPIES. I felt Jeanie’s spirit being expressed to me in the poppies. There is nothing so delicate as the paper-like petals of a poppy. Once the poppy has done its one-of-a-kind showing off, a seed pod develops, filled with thousands of seeds to insure that next year Simone’s garden will be filled with volunteer poppies.