She has two beautiful children that are close to the ages of my kids. June and her husband, David, are two of the same soul. They are both vocal, outgoing, and boisterous. Granted, sometimes these shared qualities can lead to conflict, and I am certain they had their fair share of that. But both are so musically inclined and talented that it is almost like the two found each other in order to keep each other in tune! Dave played the guitar at my wedding while June sang beside him.
June's and Dave's kids are every bit the lively characters that their families have been for generations. They are boisterous, energetic, beautiful, and lively. Their kids go through phases of looking more like one parent than the other, but truth be told, you can see both parents in their beautiful faces. Growing up in the same neighborhood as June, my family knew her family pretty well. The last time I visited home, we had a cookout, and June brought the kids. My sister pointed at June's daughter, and said, "Now that is a Jarvis" in reference to her athletic build, dark eyes, and exhuberent personality. We both laughed as my family is hardly athletic and more introverted.
The Jarvis family was always active when we were growing up, camping, skiing, hockey, etc. I envied that. I envied how jovial, animated, and boisterous their family gatherings were. I can remember tales of the kids skiing for the first time at the age of five, and they would ski between people's legs like a slalom! In high school, I went skiing with them for the first time in my life, and had a great time, despite the minor concussion I received after sliding down the hill backwards not stopping until my head hit a rock! Yeah, not kidding! Just another expression of the lack of athleticism inherent in my genes!
Dave was full of animation himself. You couldn't help but love him for it. He had a knack for sticking humor into almost any situation.
Right now this family is suffering.
Dave passed away from cancer a few weeks ago. He was just 49 years old.
June is having to deal with the loss of her husband, the loss of a co-parent, the loss of her best friend, and the loss of what has been her comfort zone for years. On top of that, she is helping two kids cope with something that they are likely too young to fully understand.
I cannot help but think of how much better it would be for me if I could just walk up to June and give her a big hug. I say better for me, because I realize a hug from me won't heal her pain, or fix her problems, but it feels like the only way I can express my sorrow to her and my love for her. I have been unable to do it through email or even on the phone. The words just don't come. I am not sure the "right" words actually exist.
I hope June knows that even though there are times when her strength seems spent, that she has more strength within. I have always admired her for her strength. I just never thought she would need so much strength all at once.
When I go to Dave's facebook page, his status is blank. Dave was very vocal in life, and the blank status speaks volumes of what is now missed. It is a blessing to see how many people take time to update his page with their blessings, sorrow, sympathy, and even sharing their daily events with him as though he is still on the other end of the computer.
In one of June's favorite songs that she often sang with Dave accompanying her, are these words,
"Someday I'll wish upon a star
And wake up where the clouds are far
Where troubles melt like lemon drops
Away above the chimney tops
That's where you'll find me,
Somewhere over the rainbow"
June, someday the clouds will be far behind you. Time will lessen the mourning and you will again be able to celebrate the humor and the joy that Dave lovingly brought into your life. And it will be at that time that you will feel close to him again.
That is your rainbow.
Every rainbow has a little blue in it,
just remember to see all the other colors that Dave has left you in your life.
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