I have never professed an adeptness with words before, but I’ve also never found myself at a loss for them either. Like a spinster with an over abundance of cats, I usually find many more than needed and lacking in any control or order. However, with the passing of my cousin, Michael, I find myself at a complete loss for words to console or find any meaning in his death.
I’ve been thinking of Michael quite a bit lately and every time I pull forth a picture of a little boy with bright eyes, and the curliest of curly hair. Michael spent the last week of his life in Hospice and – from what I’ve been told – was a shell of the person he was before. He passed before I could make it to see him, saving me – I think – of the burden of seeing him like that at the end of his life. Instead, I find myself thinking of a small boy with a quiet exuberance, which as he grew older was replaced with a sharp wit and pleasant countenance. Each time I think of him that boy invariably makes me smile. I can’t help it, there is something about those eyes and hair that just makes me grin.
In thinking of the young Michael I am also reminded of a small house in Momauguin. There are many pleasant memories of that home, and of times spent there with Michael and my other cousins. In all honesty, many of my fondest childhood memories surround that home and the people who filled and passed through it. And so, in leading me to that house, the little boy led me to my grandparents as well, making me smile once more.
It was then that I realized when my Pop died 18 years ago and my Gram seven years after, Michael was just 14 when Pop passed away. Only 14. He never got the full dose of Pop, and only a little bit more of my Gram. My grandfather still makes me laugh to this day, and some of my favorite stories are of him. And…Gram, she was a one of a kind, for sure. And suddenly, in that, the little boy led me to what solace I can find from a hard life ended too soon.
Michael, I truly believe, is at peace now, and in the best of hands. For I am certain, that for the time being, he’s got Gram and Pop all to himself now and can make up for lost time.