Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Hunchie - Every family has one. Right?

I have this Great Aunt who my children call Hunchie (not to her face). It's because she has a huge hunch on her back. I'm not even sure why she has it. Maybe I don't want to know, I mean, what if it was some kind of hereditary thing. Which I'm sure it isn't but just to be on the safe side I'm not asking the details - I'm sticking to the threat my mom always said - "If you don't stand up straight your going to end up with a hump on your back!". Hunchie is dying. At lease we think she is. She is 94 and has survived more "she won't make it through the night" and "it could be any minute now" speeches from doctors and nurses than I can count. I'm tempted to say she's in a tight race with Zsa Zsa Gabor. And if you know anything about Zsa Zsa's situation then I know you too read way to much low brow celebrity trash like I do. Anyway, my dad calls Sister and I in December to tell us Hunchie has been taking to the hospital with some terrible infections. I googled the infections and assured my father that it was going to be a swift and merciful passing, that no one in her condition much less fairly healthy survives. At least not very likely to survive. And then she survived. January came and she was again rushed to the hospital and again they said "this was the end", "it would be any minute", but it wasn't. It's been almost three weeks and she's been moved to a nursing home. It might sound like I don't care that she is dying, but I do. She wasn't the kind of Aunt who hugged, or said sweet things, or really cared  about children.  She was every bit the stiff German that my grandmother had always described my great grandmother as - on my grandfathers side.  To put it bluntly she wasn't nice at all.  She wasn't mean, just indifferent.  She did care about herself. a lot, but that was it.  And she never had children so now at the end of her life it is only my father and Sister and I. And my step mom - but she doesn't really do the dieing thing so well.   I'm not sure where I was going with this post.  I know I feel guilty about the fact that I spend time wondering why all the women in my life who loved us so much died and the two (Great Aunt Ruth and Hunchie) who have pretty much loved only themselves just keep on trucking. 

And the hunch on her back, it's so weird.  My kids keep asking me if they'll be able to see the hunch in the casket. I don't even know how you lay a hunch-back on their back. Do they do that? Maybe they lay them on their side. I tell the kids we should focus on her having a peaceful passing.  I'm as curious as the kids are.

On another note my great Aunt Ruth - who belongs to Sister and I - turned 91 last week. We took the kids and some Oreo cakesters and Reese's Peanut Butter Cups and homemade cards to her to celebrate.  She was as grouchy and pissed off as ever.  The kids noticed this skin tag on her arm that stands up straight, like a little mountain, on her arm.  I saw them staring, they couldn't look away.  I could hardly look away myself.  When we were leaving, Henry leaned in to hug her and he did the whole stiff arm hug thing - the kind where his fist where closed up tight and his arms where straight and they just kind of bumped her.  I knew exactly how he felt. Skin tags are funky.

I'll keep ya posted on Hunchie.


M said...

Omg, haha. This post was great.

I am so sorry about Hunchie, though. My family has a similar trend. The more self-centered you are, the longer you live.

bonesysblahg said...

Great post! I loved the hunchback/casket paragraph. Sorry, but physical oddities just crack me up. I know it's shallow & mean, but that's just how I roll sometimes. Or all the time. I'll let you decide.

My poor kids were doomed. Not only do we have more than our share of physical & mental oddities on both sides of the family tree... We also have people who are just too mean to die. My great-grandmother was too nice to die, but she was the exception. My grandma? So mean she kicked it till 92...before she kicked it. She was fond of questions like "Do you sit a lot at work? It looks like you sit too much." When she found out I was pregnant (for the first time), it was literally days after my wedding. All she had to say to my new hubby was "I KNEW that's why you married her." Yeah. Thanks, Gran.

On my husband's side, they're MUCH worse! My father-in-law once told my husband "You got yourself a big girl there, Jesse." GAH.

Laura said...

those 12 months sure were nice while they lasted