This series about the Saturday Sisters cannot end without a post that features Deb. Although I have written about her numerous times since that horrible day she died – she is still included when the Saturday Sisters meet.
Susan makes the guacamole Deb loved. Janet often dresses the table with the quilt Deb made for her.
Although we have reassigned seats, the place where Deb sat still holds her presence. We still consider her one of the Sisters, mainly because of her gift to us – relationship.
Judging from the number of people who attended her funeral, Deb’s gift for relationship flowed beyond our circle.
Simply put, she knew how to relate to others. It wasn’t always an easy relationship, but even then – Deb knew how to work through the differences.
None of us were ready for her death. None of us ever imagined it might happen and that she would be taken from us so quickly. We all experienced those first days / weeks / months of blessed shock that protected us for a while from intense pain.
And on the one year anniversary of her death, we met again to toast her life and remember what she meant to us.
My therapist tells me the end of relationships is the reason so many elderly people are depressed. Because when they lose someone they have loved for a lifetime, they know time will not allow them to ever replace that friendship. They simply don’t have enough years left.
As if Deb could ever be replaced. Not happening.
Deb and I often took trips together – to test the relationship, to see if we could at some point live together and share expenses.
We had our moments. I am a morning person. Deb was awake long after I was in bed. I am a scheduler, a planner. Deb was spontaneous.
We added flavor to each other even as we learned to compensate for our differences.
The strangest confrontation we ever had was during our trip to New Mexico. We were in Red River, that lovely mountain town where Deb played her Native American flute from our balcony. People gathered to ooh and ah at the sound as it echoed off the mountains.
In the grocery store that night, we each bought snacks. Then Deb said, “Put them in the same sack. We’ll save a bit of plastic to protect the environment.”
For some reason, it bothered me not to have my own sack. I have been independent for years, so to have someone else tell me what to do with my stuff – well – that just wouldn’t fly.
I know. It sounds so stupid now.
But we left the store with only one sack between us. Deb immediately sensed something wrong, and we worked through it. We talked it out of our systems. I admitted to being foolish and selfish. She confessed to assuming I would agree with her.
The main issue was to keep our relationship trustworthy and intact. Which we did.
She always found a way to reach my soft spot, buried beneath the scars of years without trust.
And that’s what I miss the most. The action of relationship. Her voice on the phone. Her face at my door. Her cats on my lap and her smile when she knew we were on the same telepathic wavelength.
Someone I could trust with my inner self.
The Saturday Sisters have added so much richness to my life, I cannot fathom being without them. Could never imagine the group without Deb.
But life does not flow within the barriers we desire. It surprises us with illness and death, but also with treasured friendships that build with each meeting.
It has been said that we meet people for a reason, for a season or for a lifetime.
Twenty plus years with this amazing group of women is a small lifetime and each of us has brought a gift to the group.
Whether it’s Encouragement, Wisdom, Service, Perseverance or Relationship, I feel truly blessed to be part of the Saturday Sisters of Lawrence, Kansas.
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