When I remember you, Julia, how you left us, it will always be with that startled look much like that proverbial “deer caught in the headlights”. In the days to come we will say all kinds of things trying to deal with our own mortality in the best way we can. The uncomfortable truth you just gave us is that age does not have a damned thing to do with it. To be stopped at mid point ( as we think of it ) seems so unfair. But then, death never claimed to be fair.

In our culture, we are not instructed about death. I remember when my fraternal grandfather died, I was just a child. My mother refused to let me attend the funeral and interment. I was too young to face death. I didn’t like the old guy and would loved to have seen him all laid out. That was a missed lesson. There were many make-up lessons to come. The last one was yesterday when someone told me you had died.

We will miss your cheer, and your ability to “get it” in all the supportive by-play that fellow workers engage in to make a stressful situation work. If you come back, as some say you will, give us some kind of high five. I’m not sure how that would work, but I bet you can figure it out. Those of us remaining still have “that way” to go. We all hope it is a long way off, but then, you never know. We still need all the encouragement we can get. Life is truly, one precious day at a time. Thank you, Julia, for you. We will miss you.

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