Thursday, 15 October 2009

My Auntie Joan

This is a positive story, in accordance with the ethos of this blog, although it may seem sad to start with. My mum's sister died this morning. Her daughter rang me at about 8:00 to let me know and we have spoken again this evening. Auntie Joan had a stroke about 10 years ago which took away her speech and paralysed her down one side but she remained cheerful and positive. Later she had to go to a home when it became too difficult for her husband to look after her, even with carers coming in three times a day and in the last few weeks she had deteriorated a lot and gone into hospital. But she had a strong faith, as do many of her family. I am glad she is over her pain and I am glad that I and her husband and my mum and many others can be so sure that she is in a better place and that we will all be together again one day. I do really believe that.
Anyway, we have been thinking today about her and about some fun memories and I'd like to share a couple.
I used to go and stay for a week in the summer holidays when I was a lot younger and one year I totally disgraced myself. After I had come home Joan phoned my mum. She had tried to get her younger daughter to put on her new pyjamas and she had said "I don't want those bl**dy things on" She was about 5 or 6. Joan, horrified, asked why she had said it. "Well, Janet says it"
We used to go and visit quite often in the day time, mum and me. We would get off the train and then walk along a long road which got a bit much for my little legs. I can feel myself now, holding my mummy's hand, somewhere about my shoulder level and the feeling of rejection when she said I was too heavy for her to carry! But I loved visiting, There was the tree we used to climb in the track at the back of their house, the hedgehog we found in the garden, my cousin going over the fence into the school gounds next door and nearly getting caught and the night my Uncle put fat in the little boiler that made the hot water tank boil so that steam came out of the taps. I shall have to write all this down for my cousin, as I don't know if she remembers it all. I did tell her something today that she didn't know, which my mum told me and that was that her mum threw a whole rice pudding at her dad not long after they were married, dish and all. She was really happy I told her about that and is sharing it with her sister and their children.
Rest in Peace Auntie Joan

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