Monday, May 15, 2006

Saying Goodbye

Sometimes a person comes into your life for a short time and makes a bigger impact than anyone else. Such a person I have in Evelene. She came into my life as my dialysis patient 4 years ago, and has been a major influence ranking up there with my grandmother and mother. Evelene is quiet, dignified, ladylike and made of tempered steel. She has a wicked sense of humor, and rapier wit. She has a radiant million watt smile, and black eyes that flash with fire and ice and leave no doubt where you stand. At the same time, she keeps herself to herself; there is no need to broadcast your burdens or make unnecessary chatter talk, just for the sake of filling air. She helped me over the years understand just what it means to honor, and who should be worthy of that honor. She carries pride as an integral part of her soul, not as a flaming banner that she needs to wave in anyones' face, and her dignity is quiet, determined and belongs only to her... It is not studied or learned, it is as much hers as skin and bone. Evelene understands her place in this world and understands that the travelers who surround her are not hers, they are with her and although she can cherish them and hold them she can not have them, nor they her. Her course is set, and her sails about to fill. Evelene has recognized that her time to leave us is here, and she has done her best to prepare us for her departure - she knows how we will grieve and she knows how much she will be missed. In her preparations she teaches us ways to deal with the inevitable ending to all life, endings we prefer to not talk about. As much as we proclaim our desire to 'wrap things up' and 'say our goodbyes' it's so much easier not to actually do it. Evelene in her quiet loving way has directed her own goodbyes and shows us how to do it with rare dignity and grace and strength. It has been a privledge and an honor to know Evelene and I don't expect to ever know her like again. Thru my tears, my own selfishness at losing her, I can feel the gifts she leaves me and for the rest of my time here, her presence will walk with me.
Goodbye, Evelene.

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