Three years ago today, I got reduced to part-time hours at my office job. At the time I was relieved to not be completely laid off, but still frustrated that I wouldn’t be making as much money. I told my boss, “This is a blessing because now I’ll be able to spend more time with my family.”
I didn’t know what the next year held in store for me. Because by November 15 of 2009, my grandfather, his second wife, and Momcat had all died.
Grandpa and his wife died within 24 hours of each other in January. They had been married for a little over 10 years, I think, and had a lot of affection for each other. They traveled a lot and stayed fairly healthy up to the last year of their lives. Grandpa had just turned 95 about a month earlier.
Momcat was another story. She’d been in poor health for years, with autoimmune disorders and other ailments affecting her as well as chronic anxiety and depression. In September of 2009 she fell and broke her arm. Then she got pneumonia, had a heart attack in the hospital, and in early October she died at a rehabilitation facility from what the doctors suspect was a pulmonary embolism. She was 66, just shy of turning 67.
Since then, the holidays have been tough for me. To be frank, the last 4 months of the year are hard. Remember that TV show “Quantum Leap”, where the scientist would go back in time to alter events? There’s a part of me that wishes I could go back to that moment right before Momcat broke her arm. Or do you watch “Fringe”, where there’s an alternate universe that looks very much like this one, right down to the inhabitants? Sometimes I wish I could get to that alternate universe and spend time with Momcat again.
But I’m here, in this universe and without the means to bend time or travel through it. And it’s really hard sometimes. The last few weeks have been particularly stressful, probably because it was the second anniversary of her death and this Sunday would have been the umpteenth anniversary of her 38th birthday. I’m making it through as best I can. Some days are easier than others.
I titled this post after a song by Paul Young, who was big in the 80s. Because as much as I dislike change sometimes, especially when it means people I love are no longer in this world, I’m still aware that change is a part of this silly, mysterious, crazy, sad, scary, wonderful, amazing thing called life.