For Betty Caussin Armistead

by
Olga S. Hardman
 

Betty.jpg (28268 bytes)

1925 - 1997

As I try to analyze this empty space in my heart, I realize I miss you. Not only were we first cousins, but we lived side by side for 68 years in houses provided by our grandfather. We shared flowers and vegetables from our gardens, as well as recipes and food from our kitchens. You were always the first one I thought of, if I had something that needed "fixing." I always knew that you could probably fix it. I never knew a female, other than you, who could do so many things with her hands, from dress-making and fancy tatting to measuring and sawing lumber.

As children, we often played together. I remember going down to your grandmother Coulsonís house to play when we were young girls. I can still smell the mustiness and oldness of her house. I even remember how she looked - her white hair pulled back in a chignon - even after all these years.

You and Bud were so good to my children. Iím certain there is a soft spot in the hearts of John D. and Mark for both you and Bud. Probably Mark and I will miss you most of all, because we saw you almost every day in the yard or on the porch or through the window.

Today is the day your only child, Della Sue, left to return to Florida after the funeral.  It is a beautiful, clear day and I pray that she and Quentin (your dog) have a safe trip. Although I didnít see her often during her stay here, just knowing she was next door was some consolation to me. Now that she is gone, I get a lump in my throat every time I look over to your house.

You should be very proud of the way you faced your illness and suffering. You have indeed been an inspiration to me. You confronted everything you had to endure with great courage.

I am grateful that I got to accompany you on your last journey to lie beside your beloved Bud. Having seen the serene beauty of your resting place, under an old tree beside the Ohio River, gives me some measure of peace and consolation.

I am also glad I had the chance to tell you "I love you" before you left us. I guess I am writing this piece to tell you once more - "I love you and will miss you more than you could possibly know."" Rest in peace, until we meet again."     Olga 
 
 

© 1997 Olga S. Hardman