Linda

 

A very close friend of mine died last week. Linda had fallen into a coma on Christmas Eve and never woke up.

I think it’s different if someone knows he’s dying. If you know, you have time to say goodbye, hug your friends, and tie up all those pesky loose ends. But when you get taken suddenly, those of us left behind feel robbed.

Linda was my friend. She was strong and kind, funny and thoughtful. She loved reading Erma Bombeck and telling terrible, terrible puns. She liked to torture me with those puns.

Every few months we’d email each other with a flurry of letters and catch up on what had been going on in our lives. I tried not to bug her over the holidays though. Christmas was a big deal for her. It was her favorite time of year, and she loved to fill her house with Christmas.

I can only imagine what she’d been up to right before she fell asleep for the last time. I guarantee you she’d probably been a whirling dervish trying to get everything ready for the big day—especially for her grand kids. There’s nothing she wouldn’t do for those kids. I got to know them through her.

We lived miles apart but you’d never know it by how we kept in touch, especially when it mattered. When Tank died, she sent me the most beautiful frame with his picture in it. It said: “Thanks for everything. I had a wonderful time.” 

Even today, years later, it tugs at my heart when I see it.  It makes me think of her and Tank and how lucky I was to have them in my life.

Linda came to visit me once. She made a rag toy for a certain baby border collie and hugged on Tank like they were old friends. She was happiest just poking around the homestead, collecting eggs and petting rabbits.

This year, a few days before Christmas, I got her annual Christmas newsletter detailing everything that had happened to her family in 2021. It’s sitting in front of me now, my last piece of her.

It makes me sad. I lost my friend. And I never got to say goodbye.

I love you Linda. I’m going to miss our conversations and your terrible puns. 

 

If you love someone, tell them. Tomorrow is never promised.

 

Comments

B.E. Sanderson said…
Oh, no. I'm so sorry for your loss, Maria. :HUGS:
Maria Zannini said…
Thanks, Beth. She was the kind of person you couldn't help but like.
I am so sorry for your loss, Maria. Maybe now you can think of those terrible puns and look to the heavens, knowing Linda's up there.
Maria Zannini said…
Madeline: LOL. Isn't that the truth.
I'm sorry for your loss, Maria.
Sarah Ahiers said…
I'm so so sorry for the loss of your friend
nightsmusic said…
So very sorry for your loss, Maria. Death is never easy, expected or not.
Maria Zannini said…
Thanks, Sarah. Everyone should have a friend like Linda.
Maria Zannini said…
Thanks, nightmusic. The sudden ones are the hardest for me.
dru said…
I never got to meet her but she was very nice. Rest in peace Linda.
Lynn said…
I know you and your friendship made her time here better, and she would tell that you if she could. Sending much love.
Maria Zannini said…
Dru: She loved to read your posts. You know what an avid mystery reader she was.
Angela Brown said…
I wasn't ready to read this. Of course, I don't think anyone is ever really ready, but this took me by surprise. :-(

My condolences for her family and may she rest in power.
Maria Zannini said…
Oh, Angela. I forgot you weren't on Facebook or you would've heard. Her son and grandson posted on her page.

She was a sweet lady. Always thinking of others.
Stacy McKitrick said…
Linda and I belonged to the same writing group and the last time I saw her was when I left that group, but I enjoyed her stories and seeing her online. She could always make me smile. I was shocked when I saw the news. Even though I didn't see her in person anymore, I will miss her.
Mike Keyton said…
A beautiful tribute, Maria. It brought a tear to my eye. She was and is a beautiful person.
Maria Zannini said…
Stacy: She so enjoyed her writing groups and going to cons. Obviously, I didn't belong to any of them but she always shared with me what they discussed that month. Then we'd bounce ideas off each other. It was fun.
Maria Zannini said…
Mike: That she is. She was such a deep well of love and compassion.
Jenny Schwartz said…
Some people are true blessings in our lives. I guess the measure is in how much we miss them. Hug those good memories, Maria. I'm sure Linda's giving Tank a big hug.
Maria Zannini said…
Jenny: That's true. I will truly miss her infectious smile and all her stories.