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Sunday, November 25, 2012

Uncle Harry's Death and Healing part 1

gratitude for our lives
My 94 year old Uncle Harry died on November 18th, 2012. He had moved into the Martin and Edith Stein Assisted Living Residence  about 8 months ago. When he moved in, my siblings and I were not at all sure that it would be a good fit. He was a loner, very proud  and had lived in the same house for over 85 years. That is correct and it is longer than many people are actually alive. He simply stayed put. He grew up, served in the army, got married and lived for 65 years with his wife Muriel in the house in Brooklyn. There were also deaths in the house and we thought that he might die there as well. However, he did not. He chose to live 8 more months in NJ.

It was an opportunity for me to heal our relationship. I had always loved my Uncle but we  had different opinions  about most  things. He claimed that he did not really know me and he was right. However much of that changed with the move. I decided that I was going to be part of his life. My husband and I visited regularly. We frequently got phone calls that he had run out of toothpaste and kleenex. I volunteered by facilitating a  weekly meditation class. Often, I just focused upon stress reduction skills and talking about themselves. I loved the group and my uncle attended twice. I was thrilled. After the group, he gave me one of the few compliments that I ever received from him. It was a blessing to have him so close.
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