Monday, September 13, 2010

Home again.

Oh, what a sad and tiring weekend it was. I don't think I knew before just how tired grief can make a person feel.

As I was flying home on Friday morning, my childhood friend Eric Wenger passed away. My family has been friends with his family for many years--our grandmothers were good friends, in fact. We went to the same church and for several years attended the same school and were in the same class. He was a year older than I.

Eric had a challenging life. A brain tumor and surgery in childhood left him slightly--but only slightly--delayed. He had the sweetest, most joyful spirit. Even after a stroke in his early thirties, which left him wheelchair-bound and unable to speak clearly, he always gave me a huge smile whenever I saw him. A final stroke two weeks ago sent him home to his parents' house to wait for the end, and he went to Heaven on Friday.

It's hard for me to articulate here how remarkable he was and how I felt about him...the feelings run a little too deeply to be easily shared. It was a very sad weekend.

We had a beautiful funeral for Grandma on one of the beautiful cool early-fall mornings that Ohio specializes in. A wonderful breeze blew during the graveside service, and it was good to stand there and feel it on my face. If the measure of a life is how much one was loved, then Grandma had a tremendous life indeed. Which she did.