Holidays are tough times for people who are grieving, and it’s no different for me. In an attempt to “put a smile on,” I do have something to share about Karen that should be remembered about her.
KAREN WANTED LIFE TO BE BEAUTIFUL
She knew that life was often not, yet she always strove to make it so. She would regularly spend time touching up scratches on things around the house, and on me, and also took great pleasure in lovingly spending hours making a craft project for a friend. She enjoyed these projects greatly, and on these, she poured in her heart. She wanted life to be beautiful, and strove to do things to make others see the same thing.
Even though she did not enjoy holidays, she supported me at them. My favorite holiday was always Thanksgiving, and I am fortunate that I was able to spend about a dozen of them with her.
When I was single, I was never responsible for bringing food to the gathering. But as a married man, I could not avoid the task for long. I think the family gave us a couple years, but then we were assigned a food. Karen and I were required to bring a vegetable tray! Oh shit.
If it were up to me, we would have dropped a few bucks at the supermarket for a vegetable tray, and have been done with it, but if you knew Karen at all, you know where this is going. I was doomed…
Karen set upon this task like it was the most important thing in the universe (after me). She made sure she knew the vegetables that my mom liked the best and started to create the Thanksgiving project. I went along grudgingly at the time, but I reflect upon it differently now.
We built one of the grandest vegetable platters that has ever been created. She wanted it to be beautiful, and it was.
Karen and I didn’t take many pictures of each other. I think we always thought that we’d reflect back on the pictures together and remember the time we had. I have the above picture of the vegetable tray, but don’t have a picture of her at the time, when she was laughing and smiling, and gleeful that we’d created the masterpiece that we had.
She wanted life to be beautiful, and she refused to settle for less.