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Returned from the dead

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Feb. 1st, 2008 | 12:00 am
mood: recovering

I've been among the missing again: I haven't posted here since August 28 of last year.  A lot happened during that time.  In particular, my mother died.  Her name was Cynthia Ulrich Edelson, and she was ninety years old.

That happened on November 7, but between the emotional processing and the practical things that must be done, I wasn't accomplishing much on other projects for a good while after that.

My relationship with my mother was, distinctly, difficult.  It's been a long time since I even pretended, to much of anyone, that I would regret her passing; that is, I anticipated that I'd be happier, and better off, when she was gone.

But that didn't mean that I imagined that it would be easy.  The end of any important relationship, even a bad one, involves some grieving; I knew that all along.  If nothing else, you grieve, in a more final way, the loss of hope that the relationship could be better; I don't think, with a parent, that hope ever really dies.  Not until the parent does; then it becomes rationally certain that, at least in this life, what you saw was what you got, and all you ever will.

I am pleased to report that my predictions were fulfilled.  Her final illness was mercifully short: she had a heart attack on Monday morning, and died, without ever fully regaining consciousness, on Wednesday afternoon.  I got a lot of grieving done during those two days, and during the days and weeks afterwards.

The aftermath is not over.  I still have things of hers to sort through.  And I've begun a sort of capsule biography of her, which, when it's done, I plan to put on the Internet (probably on the site at The Well, not here on the blog).

But the aftermath of my mother's death is no longer absorbing so much of my attention that I can't make progress on other things.  I've been doing some programming, for one thing.  I won't say much about that here: just that it has to do with two of my long-standing interests, namely, personal finance software, and the Scheme programming language.

And I do believe that my other predictions are also being fulfilled; that now that the hard part of the transition is over, I am a happier person than I was before my mother died.  I seem to be having an easier time fully believing that I can trust my own judgment about what's worth doing, for instance.

Anyway, I'm back.

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