I will be going to visit my aunt in a few short hours. She is so looking forward to seeing me. I was so looking forward to seeing her. But now, I’m not so sure.
I’ve been warned. She is not the same strong woman I knew so well. The woman who travelled across the country in her gold 1969 Oldsmobile with only a fourteen year old son and even younger niece for company, stopping at any national park en route. The women that raised three sons, putting all of them through college, one who became a physician, another owning a nursing home, and one who is taking care of her now . The women who watched two of those sons die a slow, horrendous death, within months of each other. The women, whose faith faltered for a time, but came back even stronger. The women who volunteered for a homeless shelter for many, many years. The women who never had a daughter of her own, so “adopted” me.
I will be going to visit my ninety-one year old aunt very soon. I’m told the light is gone from her eyes. I am told she weighs less than ninety pounds. I am told that her memory is not what it used to be. I have been warned.
God, please grant me half her strength, so that I can hide my grief of seeing her like this, and hide my fear that this may very well be the last time that I will see her in this life.