The garden is doing well, and there are cabbage plants waiting to be put in the ground, but this post will be about my uncle, who passed away yesterday.
We are a stubborn group, and for over 10 years our families didn’t really speak. At another uncles funeral a year or two ago, we started chatting. Surprisingly, neither of us acted odd, or really seemed to acknowledge that things had been off. My dad ended up speaking with him, and they continued to speak and build up their relationship. They went in the woods together, talked about hunting together and traded gardening tips. Dad and I would send him deer bait and cool flashlights we found on the internet. I hadn’t talked to him in person since the funeral, but we grew closer via dad, and exchanged items from the garden. My canned peppers and beans went to him in West Virginia and his venison and fresh sausage came to me in Georgia. Even though we didn’t speak often, he became my closest relative on my dad’s side. I am grateful that he and dad reconciled their differences, and even became good friends again – in fact, I doubt that dad is closer to anyone else in his family now.
Our family is no stranger to death, and at some time I hardened myself against it, but this one feels like a two-day punch in the gut. As I get older, I try to be more spiritual and live with less negativity. Instead of being angry at the man that took his life in order to steal his car, I’m praying for his murderer, who is now gone also, the families of both men, and whatever situation led up to yesterday’s events. That’s pretty much all I know to do at this point.
About the photo: The mountainous area in West Virginia where the family is from. The flat area is part of the coal mine that most of the men in the family worked at.