My Uncle Bobby died today. It wasn’t a shock, as he was very old and in poor health. But it’s still sad. I actually only just met Uncle Bobby last year, when I traveled to Rhode Island for my Uncle Gordon’s funeral. In addition to having to say goodbye to Uncle Gordon, I found it sad as I sat with wonderful aunts and cousins and uncles– many of whom I was meeting for the first time — that my family hadn’t made more of an effort to travel up north to visit everyone, and that it was so rare for my father’s brothers and sisters to find their way to the South to visit us. So, this past July we got to have a family vacation where we were able to make the trip to Providence and spend more time with everyone over happier circumstances: just because we wanted to. Uncle Bobby lived in a veteran’s nursing home and had limited ability to communicate and get around by the time I met him. But we took him to the music room, Aunt Marie’s boyfriend played Sinatra songs on the piano, and we all sang and ate ice cream. And Uncle Bobby seemed happy that we were all there. I am so thankful that I was able to meet him and write him a few letters this past year. And sorry I have to say goodbye so soon. It seems my family and I will be going to Rhode Island at some point in the next several days to say goodbye to Bobby and spend some time with the rest of my family. I love spending time with my relatives and Rhode Island is so beautiful. I just wish funerals weren’t the reason we keep going.

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