Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Cousins

On my Dad's side of the family I am the oldest of 13 cousins. This picture is of 8 of us. It was taken more than 50 years ago. This is a picture of people who grew up and became teachers and accountants and artists and scientists and parents and grandparents.

I'm the big one in the middle of the back row. That's my sister Becky in the bottom left hand corner. My brother hadn't been born yet. The distressed little boy is my cousin Billy. I don't know why he looked so unhappy here. Maybe it was being the only boy among all those little girls. Generally he looked a lot more lighthearted than this, despite being the only boy with 5 sisters. His sisters all adored him, though, so I think he had it pretty good.

I look at this picture tonight and I feel old and I feel sad. Billy died this morning. Sweet, smart, clever, amusing guy. He beat cancer once. This time it beat him.

So the cousins will gather again to say goodbye to one of our own. I hate this.

15 comments:

  1. I'm the oldest of 10 cousins on my moms side. The family has always referred to us collectively as "The Cousins." Our contact waxes and wanes, but we will always be connected. i hope it's a long time before we have to say goodbye to any one of the group. My condolences to you and your Cousins.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I'm the eldest of 13 cousins, too (also known collectively as The Cousins, Kristin). Hugs, Terry. I'm sorry that you all have to say goodbye.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I'm so sorry to hear of this Terry. My thoughts are with you today.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Let's see, I'm in the middle of eight cousins on my mom's side. We range in age from late 40s to early teens. It really is a special connection. My generation of the family is much smaller. Just four cousins on my husband's side and none on my side. Even though there are just a few, I hope they will have lifelong connections like you. I'm so sorry for your family's loss.

    ReplyDelete
  5. I'm so sorry about your cousin Billy.

    I am also the oldest of 13 cousins (on my mom's side) but we don't stay in regular contact anymore. We do have great memories of summers spent together - taffy pulls, flashlight tag, picking blackberries, going to Englishtown Auction (flea market), doing crafts, making up plays and performing them for the aunts and uncles.

    I hope your memories bring you some solace.

    jane

    ReplyDelete
  6. So sorry Terry, I send you & your family my deepest sympathies and lots of cyber {{{{{HUGS}}}}}.
    Keep all those memories!!!

    ReplyDelete
  7. My deepest sympathies Terry.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I'm sorry about your cousin, Terry. Cousins are wonderful, and I'm glad you have great memories of Billy to hold dear.

    ReplyDelete
  9. I am so sorry Terry....

    ReplyDelete
  10. Anonymous1:15 PM

    I am sorry to read of your family's loss. We are getting old aren't we? Sniff.
    Regards
    Rooth

    ReplyDelete
  11. Sorry to hear about your loss.

    ReplyDelete
  12. So sorry about your loss, Terry. That's the saddest thing as we get older, the ones who go before us. Sending healing thoughts. Jen

    ReplyDelete
  13. Sorry to read this about your loss, you have my sympathy.

    The cycle of life is a mystery and a wonder. I will be reunited with cousins and ex-cousins by marriage (or divorce) for the first time in decades at a family wedding in Portland this coming weekend.

    ReplyDelete
  14. What a great photo. My sympathy to you and your family. It is hard when a loved one dies, especially in your own generation.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Terry, you know of course how connected I am to my dear cousins. Your childhood photo is precious and my condolences to you on your loss. I had a younger male cousin, Ray, who died of cancer way too early. He was the little brother I never had. Treasure your childhood memories! Peace.

    ReplyDelete