Last week was one of ups and downs with me. I had an amazing birthday full of wonderful moments that truly will carry me throughout this year. I woke up the morning after to a text from my cousin in Greece that our aunt, Theia Maria, had passed away. She was the oldest of my father’s sisters. She never married and was the one who took care of my grandparents before they passed and my uncle George before he passed.
She was the one who came to America when I was born and again when my brother was born. I vividly remember her coming to my elementary school to tell me (in Greek of course) that my mom had has the baby and we had to get to the hospital to visit. I was in the third grade and Lester, my classmate, had brought an idea forward that we should make green placemates so we were in the middle of that and I didn’t want to leave. Plus she told me that I had a baby brother and I was promised a sister so I really wasn’t into the whole thing (sorry bro you know I love you!). I remember going to the office and having the principal call us a taxi because how else would we get there?!?
I remember calling her on September 11th after those planes hit the World Trade Center as my parents were in Greece and staying with her. With the realization of how fragile life truly was I wanted to find comfort in my parents’ voices.
She answered the phone like she always did with a “λεγετε” (speak)
I replied γεια σου θεια. (Hello Auntie)
Ελλα Ρουλιτσα μου, τι κανεις; (Hi Roulitsa, what are you doing?)
Καλα θεια μπορω να μιλισω στους γονεις μου; (I’m good Auntie, can I speak to my parents please?)
Δεν ειναι εδω ειναι στο θεατρο. (They aren’t here they are at the theater.)
And I vividly remember saying to her, εδω ο κοσμος χανετε και αυτοι ειναι στο θεατρο; (here the world is ending and they’re at the theater?)
I explained to her what had happened and to please have them call me.
Of course with every passing birthday for me, there was also a passing birthday for her as well and although we want our loved ones to live forever the realization is that they won’t. We can only hope that they are gifted health for as long as is God’s will. Well my Theia was called into God’s arms last week. I have no doubt that she is joined with my grandparents, my uncles and my cousin George. I can only hope that they watch down over me and my entire family. We have another angel among us.
Αιωνια σου η μνημη θεια. May your memory be eternal.
I found this tattoo image on Pintrest and thought it was fitting as it states: She flies with her own wings.
October 11, 2016–I have realized that this post didn’t publish so I am back dating it.
October is my month. It has been for as long as I can remember. If you don’t know me personally it is my birth month and I like a big deal made about birthdays. I don’t really care about the gifts, although I’ve never seen a gift I didn’t appreciate, but for me it is more about the cards. A well picked out card can mean more than a $1190 (CND) pair of Gucci flats.
This October has unfortunately been full of the phases of life. We met a friends one week old who immediately stole everyone’s heart by entering this world. Later we visited a friend’s two month old who was just starting to get into an every day routine of feeding, cooing, sleeping, pooping, and repeat. And found out two other loved ones were pregnant. These are the happy phases. We remembered loved ones lost both honouring their birthdays and anniversaries. And unfortunately we dealt with sick family friends and went through the phase of life where we lost them as well. I guess this year October for me has been a month of reflection. If you saw my post last week you saw my take on friendship. What about family? What is your take?
If you’re like me you have an extended family that you might see once or twice a year, or once or twice a decade depending on where they are. You try and use social media as a way to stay connected and you hope that when you’re together again it makes it less awkward but really are your friends more like family and your family more like friends? We all have those BFFs that know more about us than we remember ourselves, so certainly we need to keep them close. This usually is the case with a sibling or a close cousin. But what about parents? If you’re lucky enough to still have your parents with you, are you close to them? Have your roles reversed where you’re worried about them because of aging? Do you worry about whether the last time you told them you loved them might be the last time you speak to them? Do you make an effort or do you like many take them for granted because after all their your parents and they’ll always be there for you?
As I sit here typing this, the sun still not up yet, waiting for my hubby and little one to wake up, I ponder.
So if we’re Facebook friends you may have seen that a high school classmate of mine passed away in a tragic accident a couple of weeks ago. She was driving in her car with her two daughters and was hit by an oncoming pick up truck that was hit by another truck that was pushed into her lane. It was a freak accident and quite honestly I have no idea if she knew what hit her or if there was anything that she could have done. She was able to save her two daughters and that in and of itself is a miracle. Of course this tragedy gets you thinking about your own mortality. I’m not that old, or at least I like to think I’m not. We were the same age, she was a few months older. She was lucky to have met her husband before I met mine and start a family sooner but she gave up her life as an teacher to stay home and raise her girls. These girls now need to go through life, especially the most challenging teenage years, without her.
As I drove home earlier today, with little Miss strapped in her car seat it got me thinking of how easily this could happen to any of us. I know other people who have died in tragic ways but they were older, much older, so I guess in a way that made it ‘okay’. As tragic as their passing was you were comforted that they had lived long, happy lives. It also made me think did I tell my husband that I loved him today? Did I give the kid an extra hug when I put her into that car seat? Did I make sure I listened to what she wanted to tell me that was sooo important, or did I half listen? I have said for a very long time that this is not a dress rehearsal so we must make today count.
Rest easy my friend, may your memory be eternal and may God continue to watch your family.
Well the last couple of weeks have been hectic ones for this mama. I’ve continued to work while raising our daughter and these past 8 days my clients had four events between them that we had to get through. If you know me you know that the job got done to the best of my abilities regardless of life going on in the background.
We continued the party celebrations for an amazing little girl that we’ve gotten the pleasure to know these last 8 months. Her mom has become a good friend and it is amazing to watch our little ladies become friends. She was ever the princess that every little girl should be on their first birthday and of course surrounded by family, friends and most importantly love.
After finishing a fun Saturday it was a few more hours of work to prepare for what would be the last of four events in 8 days that I was a part of. Working on events, regardless of how big or small, you always sweat the small stuff. How will everything turn out, how will the weather effect your event, will the AV work, will there be enough food and drink, will your volunteers show up. This is just the nature of the beast to have these worries flying through your head. As I was driving into the city, I went through all of the pieces and knew we were in the best place we could be. The event which was for an organization whose board I sit on BART: North American Centre for Byzantine Arts. We were hosting a Byzantine artist who would literally create a work of art before our eyes. This artist, Dr. George Kordis, was able to literally take a blank canvas and in two hours time create a masterpiece. Thank you to Christina Kakaletris for taking these and many more amazing pictures of the evening. You can see more of her photos from the event here.
With the excitement of the party and the event behind me I was excited to get home to my DD that I had left for the first time for so many hours with someone who wasn’t a family member. Although at times I feel as though this friend is more like a sister. We began our journey home and along the way hubby and I had a flat tire. Of course this would happen on one of the coldest nights and we would also discover that I don’t have a jack in my car, so much for doing this on our own. CAA bless their hearts had a two hour wait. Not what this mother who was itching to get back home to her DD wanted to hear. We found an independent tow driver that was able to help us out in far less than two hours.
As we were waiting I got a call that no one is prepared for. My cousin back in Boston had passed away. Another individual taken from us far too soon. This man was one of the good ones. Not because we’re related but because he was a giving soul. He was there for his family, his church, his community at large. I wouldn’t be able to count the number of ‘kids’ my age and younger he helped all the years of coaching basketball. I remember his smile and his gentle ways. My heart aches for his wife and children and of course his parents. I always heard the saying a parent should never have to bury their child. I honestly can say that I fully didn’t understand what that meant until I had a child of my own. May your memory be eternal my dear cousin. Αἰωνία σου ἡ μνήμη Ξάδελφε.