Wednesday, 29 December 2010

Margaret




You may well be wondering why I've posted this video.  There is a reason, in fact two.  One is I'm keeping a promise and the other is this is a favourite song of my dear friend Margaret. She sang it at every opportunity, and I mean every opportunity, to her husband Douglas. There was never any point in buying a Bette Middler CD or video for her - she had them all.

Only a couple of hours after I posted, on Boxing Day, about the dangers of falls for older people, Margaret fell in her kitchen and broke her hip. She didn't fall outside in the snow but in her own home.  It was one of these accidents which none of us can foresee or comprehend. Stretching her hand to catch hold of the table, because she was laughing and needed to sit down, she missed the corner.

Margaret has survived asthma all her life and in the past 15 years it developed into emphysema.  Not one to be outdone, since her health forced her to give up work - a severe blow to her esteem - she undertook training in Reiki as she though it wouldn't require too much 'running around'. Once qualified she gave her services free of charge to those who needed a little comfort. Even health services at Stracathro Hospital benefitted from her twice weekly visits.  At first I was very sceptical about her 'alternative' therapy, but after experiencing the benefits, I can honestly say I did feel different for a few days.  She would tell you I certainly had fewer wrinkles. In the past three years she never had the energy to undertake Reiki and that was a loss to so many of her adoring clients.  Her optimistic attitude and continual cheery disposition gained her many friends.

In the past couple of years she has been quite housebound and our usual trips for long lunches at the Dundee waterfront Chinese restaurant had been postponed and more recently our trips round Dundee's shops, yet always her emphasis was always on postponed rather than cancelled - although eventually we both knew our chewing over food and life would never happen again at the City Harbour and neither would our shopping sprees in the Murraygate.  A mercy for Dundonians really because she drove her disabled buggy with lethal accuracy. On the odd occasion I too suffered from not being fleet enough of foot to avoid her path.

Her worst nightmare was to die gasping for breath and alone.

She had an operation on Monday to repair her hip and survived it, but yesterday her system started to close down. She died about two hours ago.

There is nothing I can do for her now but to thank her for the thousands of arguments  discussions we've had; her lack of criticism when I've made stupid mistakes in my life (and they've been many); the strong support (sprinkled with firm opinions) offered at all times; the hours of laughter and minutes of tears; her delight at knowing she had well exceeded any specialist's timeline for her demise and her never-ending ability to be grateful for seeing each day as a new day and not just another day.

I know she read this blog daily and she never failed to hauled me over the coals about certain posts. She refused to have a google account - "one email address is enough for me thank you" - so never commented publicly. If only she could read this one she would know how much I'll miss her, but then, I'm sure she knew that. God, in whom she had an unfaltering belief, will have a special welcome for her I trust.

Since I started blogging she would say, "If I go before you remember to write something about me on your blog. I'm as worthy as any politician."  Far more worthy. I was the lucky one to have you as my friend.

Safe journey Margaret.

30 comments:

Witterings From Witney said...

So ssd to read that SR and, needless to say, my condolences on your loss of a good friend.

Richard said...

Beautifully-written, Rosie, and a fitting tribute. My condolences too.

Oldrightie said...

A tear burst in our hearts when such losses happen.

subrosa said...

Thanks WfW. This is the first of my few close friends to go. None of us are getting any younger.

subrosa said...

Thank you Richard. It could have been composed better I'm sure but I needed to keep my promise now and not later.

subrosa said...

Aye OR it does indeed. You know that more than most.

JRB said...

SR – on reading your very articulate post on the passing of your friend, I was at first inclined to pass, not wishing to comment at this time of your sad loss and on someone I did not know.

But I felt somehow that I would be missing the realisation of Margaret’s wishes in not posting.

So thank you Margaret for stimulating this post. You have indeed shown us all that the value of the gift of true friendship is far more endearing and more valuable than the transient passing of politicians and their shallow ways.

To friendship
To Margaret

subrosa said...

John, thank you. She would have appreciated your gesture. In fact she would have been thrilled.

Apogee said...

Hi SR. So sorry to hear that your friend Margaret passed away after her operation.
My condolences on the loss of your good friend.
My condolences also to her family, who I am sure will miss her terribly.
You certainly seem to have fulfilled your promise to her memory. Beautifully written.

frank-davis said...

Very moving.

EvaW said...

A very moving (and honest) article. Sad to hear about the loss of your friend and my condolences to her family.

Jo G said...

What a wonderful tribute to your friend. So sorry for your loss Subrosa. God bless her and may she rest in peace.

Dramfineday said...

"I was the lucky one to have you as my friend".

And she was lucky to have you as one of her best pals Rosie.

Think of her now and again and smile. It'll help heal the broken heart.

Sheila said...

So very sorry for your loss. A promise well kept.

subrosa said...

Aye tis sad Apogee, but she would have had a hard time recovering because of her broken wrist too. Perhaps better this way, who knows.

subrosa said...

Thanks Frank.

subrosa said...

I'll pass that onto them Eva. It's all rather raw at the moment with the suddenness of it.

subrosa said...

I do hope so Jo. She so firmly believed in the hereafter.

subrosa said...

Auch aye Dram, I'll always smile because that's what we did best when together.

subrosa said...

I wasn't going to write anything Sheila because her death wasn't really of interest to anyone except those who knew her, but I did promise - several times.

Richard said...

And you were right to do so.

subrosa said...

Yes I think so Richard.

Dark Lochnagar said...

Rosie, you brought a tear to my eye, it might just be these glasses, but I don't think so. I'm sure Margaret would have been proud of your tribute and my deepest condolences to you and of course her family.

subrosa said...

Thanks DL. It's been a strange few days. Just got to ensure her husband copes. He's older and not so long ago had a quadruple bypass. Folks will rally round though I'm sure.

Derek said...

Something amiss with my eyes.

Beautiful tribute.

Dark Lochnagar said...

You mean he's older than YOU? :)

subrosa said...

Thank you Derek. It was written when I was feeling too emotional perhaps.

subrosa said...

Chronologically DL yes. Isn't everyone over 64? :)

gildas said...

Sad but a moving tribute

subrosa said...

Thank you Gildas. It was written in haste just after I heard the news, so it's not well scribed but hopefully the sentiment comes through.

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