Thursday, February 20, 2014

Skipping Away


I shuffled through the rapidly accumulating Indiana snow, head down, buried deep in my overcoat and deeper in my thoughts. Adrift. The night air hung heavy; a thick winter pall, muting all sound and shrouding all sight; a white weight descending, smothering, despite the mortuary's parking lot lights' best efforts to pierce the soft obscurity.

Forgive me, kind reader, this cruel bait and switch, for this post is not about the fish pictured above, impressive though they be. Rather, it is about the young lady in the middle, holding the trophies. Truth be told, she was not a sportswoman - at least not for the years that I knew her - though the piles of photos we've wandered through these past couple of days hold their share of sepia-toned surprises; big bass just the beginning. Who is the girl? That vibrant young thing is my wife's mother, Emmy, who, I am so sad to say, left us this past week.

No obituary, this. No recount of the things she'd accomplished in her lifetime, as if there was room for them all to be listed here. This is no long tribute. Let the papers do that.

Instead, it is a simple thanks. For her smile. For her warmth. For her generosity. And for her gracious acceptance of me, though I turned up in her daughter's life at the most awkward of times. Thank you for so many things, dear Emmaline, but especially for that.

As my wife communicated the passing and simple details to friends and family, she, at one point, texted that her mother had slipped away, only to have a misplaced finger, no doubt assisted by misty eyes, misspell and send that she had skipped away. Mary quickly rectified the error, but its recipient replied that he rather liked the image of Emmy skipping happily once again, on to her next big challenge.

And as I trudged through the parking lot to clear the windshield and warm the cold car after the family visitation, surrounded by the hush of falling snow and heavy hearts, I, too, had to smile as I imagined the lass with the bass skipping away; pirouetting into the endless swirls of white.

Godspeed, dear Emmy. Godspeed.

15 comments:

CathyB said...

My condolences to both you and Mary, Mike.

Joel D said...

She must have been a special lady. The boys gave her the 12lb bass to hold for that pic. My sympathies are with you and your family.

Brian Koz said...

very nice~
peace.

Howard Levett said...

Beautifully written Mike and my condolences to you both.

Matthew Copeland said...

Beautiful Mike.

Mel Moore (Pond Stalker) said...

Mike, what a nice way to put her memory in blog form. May you and your wife find comfort in knowing that she is at peace.

ddkfishin said...

Very sorry for your family's loss. Obviously a great woman to raise and lead thoughtful, caring family members. Beautiful, kind words on your part, Mike.

Mike Sepelak said...

Our thanks to everyone for the kind words and condolences. They are truly appreciated.

Stephen Heinzelmann said...

Very sorry for your loss Mike, that was a great write up, Hope all is well, and I bet your getting ready for some Weldon fun,

Good Fishing my friend

Mike Sepelak said...

Thanks, Steve. And Weldon does indeed loom on the horizon!

Tom Chandler said...

A woman of substance and style. There are worse ways to go than to skip.

Sorry for your loss.

Mike Sepelak said...

She was that and more, Tom. Thanks.

Joseph Fogle said...

Loved this post.

I live in Indiana, know all about the (seemingly endless this year) rapidly accumulating snow, AND I lost my own mother in mid-2013 so this post really resonated with me.

Your writing did her honor. Make sure you cling to your wife a bit more than you think she needs you to - because she needs you to.

Godspeed Emmy indeed. :)

Mike Sepelak said...

Thanks for the note, Joseph, and I am sorry for your loss. Mary and I are now both "orphans" and it is an odd feeling. I'll take your good advice and squeeze her extra hard.

Peace, bro.

Anonymous said...

It has been a year now and I love this post even more! Thank you, my love, thank you.
L
M
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