This morning my mother-in-law, Margaret Budd, passed away. She was a fighter. A strong-willed, stubborn lady who loved her family and her husband. Beneath that tough outside layer was a heart...a heart that loved, a heart that could hurt, a heart that ached for her departed husband, a heart that rejoiced with each grandchild and great-granchild.
I met Margie around 1993 or 1994. She was still living in Union then in the house that she and Ralph had finished raising her two sons in. The house were she spent the final years with Ralph. She was no nonsense---things were the way they were and you just had to accept it. I remember when her dog Buttons passed away. It was winter and the ground was frozen so no one could bury him. So she put Buttons in a turkey roaster and set the roaster on the back porch until the ground thawed enough. As she put it "the roaster had holes in it anyway so I found a use for it and it was cold enough on the back porch". No nonsense.
I was there when the family moved her from Union to Hillsboro. A sad but happy time for her. Saddness in that she was leaving behind a house full of memories and happiness that she was going to be close to her great grandchildren. As we packed up boxes, she would tell me the stories associated with a picture, a knick-knack, a piece of furniture or even a room.
It was while in Hillsboro that she took the fall that would eventually lead to her diagnosis and eventually bring her to mine and Jeff's house. I had the privilege of caring for her for over a year. Prior to that, I would drive up on a Friday or Saturday night. I would spend the night with her, we would watch movies, I took her out to breakfast and we ran errands. I smile remembering how she would always order either pancackes or waffles. Even when she was in the hospital, if I took her a pancacke she would immediately feel better. During those weekends, we would talk. She talked to me about growing up in the Depression, about caring for her sister Marilyn, about how she met Ralph, about her love for Ralph. With each conversation, my love and respect for her grew.
When we moved her in with us, I learned even more about her and I sadly watched her health decline. As her health declined though her mind stayed sharp. We would still have great conversations about her past, about things that happened in the Bible, we would sing together and we would do crossword puzzles together. I never even thought of doing a crossword until Margie moved in and now I'm addicted :>)
I will miss her because I loved her. Because I love her, I am happy that she is finally at peace and with her one true love. Thank you Margie for the life lessons that you have taught me. Thank you for being true to yourself. Thank you for the son that you gave to me as my husband. Thank you for being you.