Saturday, May 08, 2010

Goodbye L

My cousin (who I have referred to on this blog as "L") has died of cancer at 60 and was buried yesterday In Albuquerque. She was as close to a sister as I ever had, even though the only thing we had in common were family-related.

She never learned to use email or the internet. She’d always call, it was not even from a cell phone. It was from a land line where she had to pay for long-distance, so I’d generally take a voicemail and call her back on my dime. She had a very childlike personality, not very bright but very loving and sweet – it’s fair to say that she said everything in baby-talk, and everything made her giggle, even bad news... and it was always bad news. New Mexico has never brought me anything happy. I lived there twice while growing up. When my dad was first transferred to Albuquerque (with the Air Force), two of my mother's siblings and their families moved there and stayed.

One was a not very bright woman who talked way too much and too loud, who was married to an abusive, racist drunk who hated everybody. This was a guy who died after a long bout of emphysema and a family friend said that it wasn't worth it to waste money on flowers for the son of a bitch. He beat his wife and kids, and once tried to run his young daughter over with the car. During one family fight, his oldest son hit him in the head with a skillet, but it was self-defense. He was fond of calling his wife a "Mississippi whore" and many other colorful names even while she was waiting on him hand and foot during his last years with the illness. Their middle child was the closest thing I had to a brother. That was one messed-up dysfunctional family, but it was not my recently deceased cousin's family. I have written about hers a few times before:

Fundie racist rightwing Christian step-mother:
Jesus loves me, but he can't stand you
Jesus doesn't need flash

"L's" story, including her escape from the survivalist husband in Wickieup Arizona.
Family Sadness (Long)
About my uncle, and her uncle-daddy, who died last year
Goodbye Uncle
And when we knew that it wouldn't be long
Sad family reality

A few months ago, around the time of that last post, she left me a fairly long voicemail, and it was basically said "I am going to die soon, and wanted to say goodbye." I really wanted to keep that message in digital form, but I was too ignorant on cell phone technology to get it figured out before it expired. Too late now (and I still don't know how to do that).

5 comments:

Debra She Who Seeks said...

Sorry for your loss, Blueberry. Coming from a family of gawd-awful relatives myself, I know how extra, extra special it makes the decent ones.

Blueberry said...

She was a good one. I think all the cousins I grew up with, the ones I knew, were good-hearted (if dealing with a *whole* lotta baggage). However (and L included), the entire family is made up of strong Christians which means that I really have to watch what I say/write to them because they would probably stage an exorcism if they found out about my lack of faith.

YELLOWDOG GRANNY said...

so sorry for the lost of your friend..will light a candle and send up a prayer for her safe journey.

Professor Chaos said...

RIP, cousin I.
Sounds like she was a rose among thorns.

Dr. Monkey Von Monkerstein said...

Sounds like L can finally have some peace.