Valerie is a 42-year-old, single, Reformed Christian lady who lives in Baltimore. She doesn't remember a time
before she knew and loved Jesus, but she does remember accepting John Calvin into her heart in March of 2000.
Valerie is a member of Christ Reformed Evangelical Church in Annapolis.
Though her career aspiration is to be a housewife, Valerie has not yet found anyone suitable who wishes to hire
her for employment in that field (or, more properly, anyone suitable has not found her), so in the meantime she
earns her daily bread working in communications -- editing, writing, print design and website management.
"The last enemy that will be destroyed is death." --1 Corinthians 15:26
On March 22 Mom called to tell me that her best friend, my neighbor Miss Gloria, the "other mother" of my childhood, had leukemia. They gave her 2-18 months. Mom came down from New Hampshire for her usual spring visit from April 24. She spent most of that time with Miss Gloria, and we had lunch here one afternoon when other old friends came down from Pennsylvania for the day. She left May 6, saying she'd be back when it was close to the end -- that Miss Gloria would call to let her know. She returned just nine days later. She spent the first night or two here at my house, and has been at Miss Gloria's almost 24/7 since then. She's had a few breaks when someone else comes for a while.
I was down visiting on Thursday evening, and then with a very busy weekend didn't make it back 'til Sunday evening. Miss Gloria was so much altered. A funny: I was reading a novel to her and got to a scene that was rather more explicit than I could read out loud. I did some on-the-fly editing for a few sentences, and then I just had to stop. Mercifully, Miss Gloria had fallen asleep. She'd have skipped those paragraphs, too...and did! She woke up a while later, and I told her why I'd had to stop reading, but that afterward Dylan opened Jane's locket and found Chloe's picture, which is all anybody needed to know, anyway.
Today I cried to and from and between graduation parties, managing to hold it together during, so I could rejoice with those who rejoice. Then I went down and sat with Mom for a while 'til she shooed me out. My brother David made it over today, too. Carless, he takes several buses and several hours to get here from across town. My other brother, D.J., came a couple weeks ago. I'm glad we all got some last moments. Mom says it will be tonight or tomorrow. She knows these things because she cared for Nana and Grampa at the end. Mom's like that -- there to do whatever's needed, and competent at doing it. A pioneer, for sure.
I've never lost anyone this close to me. I don't grieve as those who have no hope, but I do grieve. I've cried off and on for weeks. I've cried through writing this, and will go to bed and no doubt cry some more. I'll cry again and again in the days to come. It isn't supposed to be this way. Death is not supposed to happen. But it won't always happen. Death has been damned. It has been mortally wounded and is in its final throes. It has been sentenced and will receive no commutation of its execution. Miss Gloria may die tomorrow, but she will live tomorrow as she has never lived before. Death will grasp her for a moment, but Resurrection will embrace her for eternity.
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 11:45 PM