Sometime life can be so complicated.
I am not certain what I would have done if I had known before. I am not certain my decision would have been welcomed. I am not certain of much.
Saturday I received word that my former mother-in-law has passed away. She was young, only 65, and from what I understand it was sudden and unexpected.
My heart broke. These people were once my family. They were a huge part of my life for over 10 years. I was in shock and felt helpless to do anything to help.
By the time I found out everything was done. No visitations left to go to, no funeral left to attend, no way for me to pay my respects to a woman who had welcomed me into her home and her life the best way she knew how.
I guess finding out so late took the pressure off of me to make a decision as to whether as I attend or not. What is standard practice surrounding this sort of event? Are exes welcome or would that make things even more awkward? Has enough time passed that my attending would have been seen for what it would have been . . . a sign of respect towards her and the family . . . a family that was once my family.
I haven't spoken to any of the exes family in years. In fact, I hadn't spoken with his mom since before we split. Things were just ended. It seemed easiest to cut ties quickly . . . perhaps protecting me from the hurt of others while I was in such pain.
She was the matriarch. The stereotypical off-the-boat Italian mom, who was actually an honourary Italian as she was off-the-boat Polish. She cooked, she cleaned, she ran that house with a wee bit of an iron fist. To this day, I have never had a better homemade tomato sauce as the one she made. It was so good!
One of the nicest thing she ever did for me was make homemade gnocchi just because I mentioned how much I enjoyed them the first time I had had them. It was a little thing but it made a big impression on me.
Our relationship wasn't always easy. We were polar opposites on some many things and I know that my actions and opinions were not always understood but she would try to at least just let it be . . . at least some of the time.
I did the only thing I could do, I sent my ex a little message letting him know that I had just found out and that I was so, so sorry for his loss. He actually wrote back and said thanks for the note and that it had been a long hard week. I feel like I want to write back, to let him know that I would have been there to show my respect and to finally say good-bye, but perhaps it is best that I just leave it with his final note.