My Uncle’s Funeral and Family Connections

Here you can see three of the Egyptian figures I got from my Uncle’s collection (circled in pink) on my table

Over the weekend my husband and I went over to Indiana for my uncle’s viewing and funeral. Although the occasion was obviously sad, it was really nice to see some of the relative I rarely see, especially my cousins. One of my cousins even told me that he had been reading my writing and loved it. He encouraged me to “keep doing what you’re doing”, and that meant a lot ♥ I didn’t even know any of them read my work!

I got a few momentos to remember my uncle by as well, which was nice. Since we both love Egyptian art and mythology, I got several of his Egyptian figurines, and a quilt that was made by my great-grandma. Having that connection to your roots during sad times like this can be comforting and make you feel a part of something bigger than just you.

My Uncle is Dying

I’ve been really sad this week. Depressed too. I found out my great uncle is dying and has been put on hospice care. He has overcome a lot this past year, he had a stroke and then got Covid and developed pneumonia, but he recovered from both better than expected, but now he has some kind of heart/blood issue that they say can’t be fixed because he is simply too weak to survive any kind of surgery to correct the issue. Sadly, they can’t even grant his wish to go back home and pass away there, as he is in a lot of pain and they feel the IV pain relief drugs are necessary for his comfort since he doesn’t respond well to the pill form.

I have always had a special relationship with him. I spent quite a bit of time with him as a kid growing up. When we moved away when I was 12, he faithfully wrote me letters for years, letters that helped me through very rough times in my teenage life. I even chose him to marry my husband and I as he was an ordained minister. He was definitely the best example I had of Christianity in my life, and even though I’m not an evangelical Christian anymore, I still greatly respect the example he set of being kind and loving.

I don’t want him to suffer, and we have been worried about his quality of life ever since the stroke, but it is still hard to say goodbye. And so, I’m sad.

Visit from the Dead?

Ok, I had a weird experience this morning. I woke up to a loud, male voice urgently calling out my childhood nickname (Mandy). At first, I thought it was my husband, so I got up to see if he was ok, but quickly saw he wasn’t here and his car was gone. I texted him to make sure he was ok because I felt kind of weirded out, then went back to bed.

Right before I fell back to sleep, I had an image flash before me (with my eyes closed) of some children’s alphabet blocks spelling out the word “Dad”. I found that weird too, but went back to sleep.

When my husband got home, he had to have me unlock the door, because somehow the lock that can only be unlocked from inside was locked. I hadn’t touched the door all morning, and my husband couldn’t have possibly locked it from the outside.

When I sat down to breakfast, I decided to use the GhostRadar app (similar to the spirit box they use on ghosthunting shows) on my phone to ask if my dad (who passed away when I was 12) had been here. The first three words I got were “house”, “visit”, and “parent”. I was a bit blown away by that.

So what do you guys think?

Celebrity Deaths

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Today the world is mourning the loss of basketball superstar Kobe Bryant, his 13-year-old daughter Gianna, and 7 others who died in a helicopter crash yesterday. Personally, I am not a sports fan, so I didn’t feel much emotionally in connection to Kobe, although I empathize with the loss that his family, friends, fellow players, and fans feel, and always feel sorrow at the loss of children who barely got to live.

When celebrities die, I’ve often heard people complain about all the fuss they get. About how we act like they matter more than any other person who lives and dies. People complain about the adulation celebrities receive after their death, while “real” heroes like soldiers, firefighters, police officers, emergency workers, and others die without much recognition at all.

While I understand this sentiment, I think the reason that celebrity tragedies get so much attention isn’t because we truly think their lives are worth more than anyone else’s, but because so many people feel like they actually know them. If we are fans of their art or achievements, we feel a bond with them, even if we have never met.

I know I felt this way with Michael Jackson, Robin Williams, and Alan Rickman. I loved their work, their personalities, even their flaws to some extent. It felt like there was a relationship between us, even though there wasn’t. Thinking about their deaths still makes me sad because I miss them, just like I miss my father and sister who have passed on.

I believe this feeling can even occur with people who died before we were born. I feel like I know Vincent Van Gogh, Edgar Allan Poe, Emily Dickinson, and John Lennon in intimately real ways, when obviously I didn’t (unless I lived previous lives, but that is another topic altogether lol).

Who are some celebrity deaths that you felt deeply?

Reasons I’m Depressed Right Now

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  • My cat will die tomorrow. After 14+ years together.
  • A meetup group that I was truly enjoying and was beginning to feel part of disbanded for the foreseeable future.
  • I feel artistically lonely. I wish I had others in my “real” life who had the passion for art and literature (especially poetry) that I have.
  • There is a good chance I am going through early menopause and that is triggering my major increase in migraines and making my hormone levels go crazy, affecting my mood as well. The doctor says this could go on for years 😦
  • I have been fighting off migraines the last few days.
  • I wish I had someone to watch movies and tv shows with that really got into them like I do. My husband is just not a movie/tv guy.
  • There will always be a huge hole in my life where my family should be, as all of my immediate family members are dead other than my mother, who I have a shaky relationship with.
  • Climate change catastrophe and human ignorance. The realization that if scientists are right about climate change, we are likely causing our own extinction, as well as the extinction of much of life on earth. It is pretty much too late now and we humans are not willing to make the changes needed to save ourselves and the world even if there was time. In the end, industrialization may have been the absolute worst thing that could have happened to the world. I guess we can hope the scientists are wrong, but it isn’t looking good from what I see.

Depression Again

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Been really fighting off a depression slump again, and I’m losing. Today I slept in until after noon – that is often one of the first signs that the depression is getting real. The longer and later I sleep in often correlates directly to a diminishing mood.

You may ask if there is something triggering this slump. The holidays often seem to be related to the issue. Last night I had a dream about revisiting the house my dad died in when I was 12, I’m sure that might have something to do with it – approaching the holidays and thinking of all the family losses again.

My cat, Spyder, really has me down too. He has been sick for over a month now. We’ve spent a ridiculous amount of money on 3 vet visits, 3 rounds of antibiotics, special diet foods, and medical tests – all to be no closer to a real answer about what is wrong and with him not getting any better, at least not for long. He’ll get a little better on the antibiotics, but once they stop, he quickly gets sick again. Yesterday and today he hasn’t even been eating and just sleeps all day.

Feeling pretty low and hopeless at the moment.