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Friday, February 4, 2011

Far-Moster Kirsten

We received sad news: Christian's aunt passed away. This was Farmor Hanne's sister Kirsten who lived in Denmark. In addition to family, Kirsten had many friends who will miss her. I never had the chance to meet her, but selfishly feel the loss of someone who loved Zenas.

We not only mourn her death but also grieve for our loss: we not only miss her presence in the world, but also lament our missed opportunities to meet and know her. Denmark was our next planned stop of the Baby World Tour, which we hoped we'd resume later this year. Though she was so far away, Kirsten had made sure that we knew how happy she was about the birth of our son. She sounded so excited about meeting him one day; and we wanted to bring her the joy of holding him her arms, feeling that joyous rush of touching family. I would like to believe that there is an afterlife, where she is now experiencing all that is Zenas with all her senses.

Kirsten sent us a number of cards on which every blank space filled about how much she thought about us and baby. Chris said the handwriting was exactly the same as he remembered from the cards he had received throughout his whole life--the words uniformly slanted, her loops a bit large but the letters still reedy and written with a fine point. I cannot say I knew her at all but felt a familial love for her all the same, it's hard as a parent not to love back someone who loves my child so much. I only spoke to her once on the phone, but Chris's love for her was infectious, and her reciprocation that obvious by how much she cared about our baby.

I will remind Zenas that she spent precious hours talking about him. She had sent one of the coolest outfits he wore as a newborn. We had yet to properly thank her for the present she had sent for his first Christmas, which was a soft baby book of Winnie the Pooh--in Danish. I had hoped to have her read it to him when we visited, but it will now serve as a memento of her amongst his keepsakes. We had sent her photos of Z, which she loved, and now we plan to frame a picture of her to keep in the house so that Zenas will always recognize his great-aunt.

Like the word farmor to mean father's mother, there is a word for which means mother's sister, moster. Borrowing the construct of the word for grandmother, I want to remember Kirsten as Zenas's Far-Moster, though I'm likely making up the word. I would like Zenas to have an association that is more than her name, so that her significance in his life is always obvious.

1 comment:

  1. Oh, I'm so sorry for your loss... That always strikes me as a hollow thing to say, but I am incredibly sorry that you have to face that blank space where all the future memories of Z's Far-Moster might have been.

    This is such a warm thing you've written... You can feel all the love and friendliness that you had between you and C and Z and her, even if you hadn't met her yet. And being remembered with love is, I think, the best tribute anyone can have.

    Big hugs.