Six months ago tonight, I went with my dad to The Papermill Playhouse to see a show. He and my mom would go to every dress rehearsal for the shows that the playhouse put on. That night, was the first night of him going without my mom. He asked me to join him and it began as a good night. We learned earlier that day that my sister-in-law Francine had gone into the hospital with what we thought at the time was severe morning sickness. Earlier in the day, it did not seem too serious. Unfortunately, we learned later in the evening, that it was much, much more than just morning sickness.
As soon as the show ended, my dad and I went up to the hospital and met the rest of our family there. By this time, we had been told that there was no hope for a recovery. No chance of saving Francine or their unborn babies. After a day on life-support, Tim made the most difficult decision of his life and the machines were turned off, sending Tim and our family into a tumultuous time. We hadn’t even had time to grieve for my mom and then this happened. At 35, Tim is too young to be a widow.
Over the last six months, Tim has had good and bad days. He has a remarkable group of friends who keep him busy and active. Our family tries to do what we can to help and to give him the support that he needs. His healing will happen gradually. It will come at its own time. Grief is not something that can be rushed. There is not a “timetable” for how long it should take. With Tim, I see good and bad days. I can tell by his Facebook postings what kind of day he is having. He has been wonderful to Francine’s mom, visiting her several times a month and taking her to the cemetery. I know he finds comfort when he visits Francine. She and my mom are buried side by side and when he is there, I think that he feels a sense of peace. when he is there.
There is a mass for Francine tomorrow. I won’t be able to go because of work, but I hope that Tim knows that everyone will be thinking of him tomorrow. Francine left her imprint here on Earth and she will never be forgotten.