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a few weeks back i missed a party for my aunt and uncle because i was sick. as my aunt is dying and i am running out of time in which to visit her, we went to see her yesterday.

gone was the vivacious firecracker i once knew, the five-foot spitfire who could control a room with a wave of a cigarette. gone was the smiling bundle of sass and style. in her place was a gaunt but puffy-faced old woman with crippled old woman arms and hands. when did this happen? my god, she's younger than my mother but looks as worn as my grandmother.

my uncle told her we were there, but i don't know if she understood. she moaned a few times -- because of the pain, i was told -- but made no other sounds. her eyes were glassy.

why does the end of life have to look like this?

postscript: before i got to post this entry, my mother called. my aunt died this morning. no more pain.



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