Rita or Fritz as she was nicknamed was the strongest woman I've ever known.She lived and died on her own terms, so to speak. She had embraced each stage of her life without regret always with a strong positive attitude. She made choices and decisions for herself that she felt were necessary and never looked back. Like a couple years ago when she decided she needed to move to an assisted living facility. It certainly wasn't something anyone wanted her to do,but she felt it was the best decision for her. Assisted living is really just a fancy new name for the old ugly one, nursing home. It's a place that doesn't really support or encourage anyone to grow stronger or healthier or wiser. I hate them and wish they didn't exist. I know they serve a purpose but will someone please tell me what that purpose is! She would not change her mind or leave no matter how often we asked her if she wanted to.
|Fritz is sitting the second from the right|
|Several years ago,she is wearing a white jacket and a yellow top|
I think there is much to be said however about getting up everyday and having to take care of yourself and your surroundings. A purpose. A purpose to stay alive, and a reason to work hard at staying alert. Once that is gone what is there? To sit and slowly age and fade away.By protecting our elderly with assisted living we rob them of their lives and we in the end miss out on all that they still have to teach us and share.
As family began to come in to visit her in the hospital this past weekend,we all began remembering stories about her and her siblings. She was the third born of 8 children. Seven girls and one boy. And we realized while talking that these siblings were dieing in the order that they were born.
Rita was the third born and the third to die and at the exact same age as her two older siblings,87. It gave me shivers when we all came to the realization. Very strange don't you think? We all sat very still thinking of which Aunt was the 4th born. A pattern we all pray will not continue.
So now we must say goodbye to her on Friday. That will not be easy.But as all of the kids discovered she has had her funeral planned since 1988,right down to the music.And as she always made the kids attend church every Sunday,she has asked for a full Catholic Mass funeral.....so as we all laughed through our tears, and we all agreed she sure did live life on her own terms....but MOM REALLY A FULL MASS...Ha Ha. Yes a full Mass as she wanted,with everyone there in attendance.
We will miss her forever,but are comforted in the knowledge that we will be together again one day.