This is not, however, any given Sunday or just the day when the moon goes into a full eclipse. It's the day I found out my granddaughters' grandmother and adoptive mother (by law) died last night. Karla was a good person and a good woman. She and her husband David stepped up to the plate and took care of my granddaughters, Alanna and Sierra, when their parents (that would be my son, David Scott, and his wife, Julie) did not because they were either drunk or high, or both in my son's case. For that, I will always remember and thank Karla and I will do my best to forgive the choices she made that led to the death of my grandson, Connor. I'm not good at holding grudges, but that little bit of information does tend to stick in my craw a bit.
Karla has done her best to take care of my granddaughters even while instilling in Alanna and Sierra an unhealthy love affair with the Disney princesses. Not the Disney princess love that I have always had for Snow White, Sleeping Beauty (Aurora), and Cinderella from my youth, but an unhealthy Disney World fueled consumer-driven PR campaign for the more modern day versions. Don't get me wrong. I enjoy Once Upon a Time and the various citizens of Storybrooke, but the kind of rabid fascination that goes with dressing Alanna and Sierra in look-alike miniature versions of the Disney princesses is a bit over the top as far as I am concerned. That borders on the insane.
I will forgive Karla for her obsession with all things Disney, an obsession that would have delighted and possibly repelled Walt Disney if he were still alive and not a Walt-sicle in some warehouse where they store people-sicles for reanimation in the distant future, a future where Disney rules the Earth and all human colonized worlds.
Earlier this week I emailed Karla because it was my turn to fit Alanna and Sierra for Halloween this year. I was browsing through ghost, ghouls, demons, and evil witches to find the right costume since it's my turn at Halloween bat this year. Karla had last year to tart the girls up as Disney princesses -- again. I was looking forward to indulging my Halloween urges early. It was to that end I emailed Karla to remind her of our deal. I didn't expect what I got back. Her badly misspelled answer was that she was just getting out of the hospital and she had bone cancer. Bone cancer. Karla had breast cancer last year so the spread of the cancer to her bones so quickly was not good news. It wouldn't be good news if she had been an enemy instead of the parent of my granddaughters. I was stunned.
Since I had good luck this morning when I woke up and called Megan, mother of two more of my granddaughters, and got through, I decided to give Karla a call and see how she was doing. I took it in stride when her husband, Dave, answered the phone and then was gob-smacked when he told me Karla was dead. I was full of plans for Halloween and hit a brick wall at Mach 5 when he told me Karla died last night. My first thought while I struggled not to cry out loud was for the girls. They are young yet to understand their grandmother/adopted mother was dead, but a constant presence in their lives from birth is now gone. Dave told me he had lots of family and the girls would be cared for. I had no doubt.
The thing is, while I'm chagrined at my timing and the frivolous joy at picking out Halloween costumes for my granddaughters is a bit watered down now, I will actually miss Karla. She was no good at sending emails or keeping up with technology to email me pictures of Alanna and Sierra as they grow up, but she faithfully sent me pictures of both girls every time new pictures were taken. I have pictures of both girls in dance costumes and T-ball costumes and pictures of Easter outfits and school photos now that they are in school. There were no long letters -- or any letters -- but there were always pictures. If some of the pictures also contained evidence of her Disney princess obsession, I let it slide because my granddaughters looked adorable in their Disney finery.
I know that Dave will be better at sending pictures, 8 x 10 size pictures and not just wallet size along with the occasional 5 x 7, but I will still miss Karla's inexperience with all things computer and thank the happenstance that made her my counterpart (and a stalwart counterpart at that) in my granddaughters' lives. I will miss Karla.
Rest in peace, Karla, and thank you for loving and taking care of my granddaughters.
Karla is the one in the center. To the left is the girls' cousin and I don't know his name. Sticking out her tongue on the right is Sierra sitting beside her mother, Julie. Front and center is Alanna, my other granddaughter. I believe this was Easter this year. Next year the scene will be minus Karla.
That is all. Disperse.