Wednesday, August 18, 2010
Of Dreams of Dignity
Lots of old friends this week at Green Acre. One friend of my youth is bound for Croatia in a few weeks. He wanted to play pool last night and I obliged. I also invited another friend that I usually play with albeit infrequently. We laughed better than we played. I had to call it quits after an hour and a half. On this new plan where I am losing almost a pound a day, I run out of steam quickly--especially at night. Another old friend is here who lives in Italy. It is her sister I want to tell a story about. I woke up in tears thinking about her. For me, love comes easy, but this lady I truly admired. We served on a Baha'i Summer School Com. in N.Y.. Her family background of Persian and English might explain the aura of dignity that surrounded her. Debbie had an unerring sense of what was respectful in all situations, but I don't want to imply she was stuffy. She put up with my calls during meetings when I would go crazy with being in a meeting and declare "free form dancing time" She smiled when I danced on my hand- made oak coffee table in our living room. Our summer school group would meet on our enclosed porch. Maybe it's my own lack of stamina after a long day that makes me understand the memory of her getting to her feet and wordlessly leaving the meeting. We knew it was brain tumor pain getting to be too much. Not a word of complaint--just a ladylike departure back to her two adorable children and husband to recover. She passed away a month after the school session that summer. I don't have too read musty history books to learn about heroes. They bounced on my knee as a child and clapped along with her sister as I played ping pong with their father. Now for the "Of dreams of Dignity" part. Some months after that summer, our beloved treasurer was looking for a Baha'i book. She found the book in a box she had brought home from the summer school. Now I should say none of us were really qualified to run a ten day all volunteer summer school. Our treasurer was irreplaceable though because, despite all the scholarships, we dispensed there was always lots of money left over. We attributed the excess to God the Humorous(Actually attribute of God in the Writings) rather than bookkeeping error. Anyway, inside of the misplaced book she finds a sizable check for the summer school that was donated by our late lamented Debbie during the last session. It was in memory of her Persian husband's uncle. The summer school had an "In Memoriam" fund. Our treasurer was horrified and immediately called the husband. He had been having dreams of his uncle and Debbie. They were greatly concerned about money for the Baha'i Fund. The husband thought the meaning was that they were urging more contributions to the Baha'i Fund. He had called his far flung family telling them that Debbie and Uncle so-in-so. wanted them to give much more. Two mysteries were solved. The husband had been unable to balance and close out Debbie's checkbook because there was still a ck unaccounted for six months after her passing and a large sum of money in the account. He wrote out a new check and explained to the relatives. Her sense of dignity for her and her family would not let her rest in peace. I woke up with the memory of Debbie and this story. I can never think about her without crying. Heroes should never bounce and laugh on my knee and leave this world too soon. I wrote in my journal earlier this morning. "Too beautiful for this world. No garden, a fitting setting. The aromas fail to envelope. So off she went to the Garden of God. Her flower blooms on the highest hill and we--poor bound souls to this dust can only swirl around her."