Word from the publisher: A year of growing through grief
On my drive to work this snowy morning, I stopped to let a woman walk across the street ahead of me. First, I noticed the girl she was pulling behind her on a sled. She looked about two years old and was trailing her hand along beside her, feeling the snowy bumps, her eyes fascinated with the icy sparkles everywhere. Next, I noticed a Golden Retriever also trailing behind the woman, who I assumed is the mom. The dog, as happy with the outing as the girl, divided its attention between the girl, the mom, and my own car that was a threat.
Mom and dog checked with me that I was firmly stopped while they crossed. Luckily my sunglasses hid the tears streaming down my cheeks, even if my smile and raised hand assured them, they had all the time in the world to safely pull that precious cargo across John Egan Street.
There is a picture, famous in my family, of myself as a baby cozied up in a sled. Our family dog, not a Golden Retriever, but a Newfoundland, watching over me one sunny winter day. I watched that mom, with her hand raised to me in solidarity and gratitude. The skip in her step once firmly crossed the street reminded me of my own deep joy in sharing this life with my daughters. And how focused my mother had been on providing us with sparkling childhoods.
Dear readers: many of you helped me through grieving my mother’s death this fall. Four years ago, my mother and I put an addition on my house for her to spend the next 20+ years with us. In August she received a diagnosis of the most acute leukemia. Anomalies were noticed in a routine blood exam in February, studied through until the summer and were alarming enough to do a bone marrow biopsy. She passed away October 12, at home. Her siblings, kids, grand kids, my dad, nieces, nephews, and extended family were left in utter sorrow.
Your cards, your flowers, your food and having joined my family at her funeral and reception – it all helped me, my daughters, her siblings, and our over-sized family. We felt buoyed by the support from my Aylmer Bulletin family, as well as the APICA family, QCNA family and Friends of the Marina family. Thank you to each of you.
In the past few years, Aylmer lost so many grandmothers and grandfathers, cousins, and grandkids. Covid-19 didn’t take all of them; at worst, we lost precious loves to suicide, to the opioid crisis, to all kinds of cancers and accidents. They are so missed, all of them. And this time of the year is hard. But here’s the key: despite the dead of winter, there are literally sparkles everywhere. That girl in her sled, being pulled by her delighted mom and watchful dog, she is here to remind us of all the sparkling that come with the cold.
At this time of year, I normally share an update about the state of the newspapers. This is your update, dear reader: Sparkles come with the cold of winter! And so, as the Bulletin team pulls together to provide Aylmer with her newspaper in 2023, as the best year ever, they are also pulling together to help all of Aylmer grow as a fulfilling community. From our Bulletin family to the wider Aylmer family: Happy New Year, may you prosper in health and happiness!