Before moving back to my home town, I served for two years as an apprentice at a funeral home in Oklahoma City. It was there that I met Rosie. The funeral home had a cemetery connected to it and Rosie's husband was buried there.
If I had to guess she was in her 90's. She always had someone drop her off or sometimes she would arrive in a taxi. My desk faced the front glass doors so I would see her in her green coat taking slow baby steps with her cane towards the door.
The first time we talked I didnt quite understand why she was there. I didn't realize at the time she was there to teach me something.
Rosie came to the cemetery every chance she got to visit her husband she had lost several years earlier. She would come back into the funeral home and wait for her ride and thats when she began to talk to me about her life.
She began to tell me about her husband. I'll never forget it, she would say, "Honey, you just know a good lookin man when you see one." I laughed so hard because it doesnt matter how old ya are~that's true, girl.
She would talk about her husband being in the service and all the places they traveled to over the years. She cried when she got to the end of her stories and she would always end our conversation with, "oh, we had such a wonderful life."
It was then that I realized that she wasnt only mourning over losing her husband, she was mourning over losing her "life" too.
At my age I had so many things to look forward to, people to meet, places to see, opportunites everywhere. Rosie had reached a place in her life~a place we all will one day~where all she has to look forward to in her life was the chance to relive those memories by telling her story to someone who would listen.
I try to remember Rosie when I am in a hurry ~running to the store, stressed out because my toddler is screaming that she wants more candy, baby has a dirty diaper~irritated at my husband.... One of these days, these will be the days I'll miss.