Wednesday, January 5, 2011
End of an Era
I could tell many stories about Ida (Sam was gone by the time I entered the family). For now, I'll just share the above image and another one: that she danced in spike heels at her 80th birthday party. As my husband said of her, "The evening gown is her business suit." He said this because she was a very active community leader and fundraiser on the gala benefit circuit.
Until about 10 years ago, she lived in a glorious light-and-color-filled apartment in Miami Beach. As my daughter said when she heard that Ida was gone, "She was an institution." And I suppose that's true when you've lived so long. For my husband, having Ida alive into his middle age prolonged a phase of life beyond what most people experience. Few of our contemporaries even have one parent alive, yet my husband still had Ida (and both parents). It's a family with lots of longevity. Jim's mother, Janet, is on her way to Ida's funeral as I write this.
I remember my mother saying that no matter how old someone was, nor how long they lingered with their illness, it's always a shock when they die. It's that final finality, the hole left in the world.