Monday, July 8, 2013

Fearless in a time of mourning

After nearly a ten year battle with Alzheimers, my Nonie passed away.  She died at home in her sleep, just as she wished.  No matter how many people I lose in life, it is not something I get use to.  She was sick, and old, but it was still a sad time.  My dear husband has been lucky not to have as many encounters with death as I have.   I had prepared the funeral arrangements last year, so only minor details had to be worked out when she finally passed.

There was a two-hour visitation at the funeral home.  Nonie's body lay out in a new, baby blue Nieman Marcus suit for all to see.  People mourn differently.  My Mother needs to see and weep over the body.  I, on the other hand, prefer to stay as far away from the body as possible.  As we are wrapping up the visitation telling the last few cousins good-bye, I watch my Mom turn to Husband with a request.  Keep in mind, as I listen to this conversation I act like I am totally oblivious.
"Sweetie, will you go get Nonie's jewelry?"
"Of course.  Who has it?," Husband asks innocently.
"She is still wearing it.  Make sure to get her wedding rings." Mom said. 
I watch as the color leaves his face and he turns ghost white.  Processing what he is about to do, he walks up to the casket.  A cousin stands at the casket when Husband approaches. Husband turns to him and desperately pleads.
"I'll give you $300 cash if you take those rings off her finger."
"No way." The cousin laughs in response. 
Husband looks around the room one more time for someone to turn to, then with no way out, he decides to go all in.  He grabs Nonie's cold, life-less hand, twisting the rings back and forth to get them off as quickly as he can; turning his head trying not to watch.  Once he has the rings in his hands, he walks away looking straight ahead.  Mission accomplished.  This is just one more of the millions of reasons I love this man.

1 comment:

  1. My paternal grandmother died from Alzheimers as well. I heard she could not remember anyone but her daughter that took care of her day to day.