Monday, April 28, 2008

More Sandy and Jay

It has been one of those terrible rainy days when you just don't feel well even when everything is going well. Obviously, it is not. On awakening, you sort of hope as the realization dawns of the loss of a great friend, that you just had a bad dream that will shake off and be forgotten as you regain consciousness. I can't even imagine what it is like for Jay, the children and her parents when the moment comes when you realize the awful reality.

I succeeded in getting some work done today, catching up with business, cleaning up and doing laundry left over from traveling back and forth from the kids. When Saul came home from teaching, we decided a condolence phone call, while it would have been emotionally easier, would just not do for someone who was there for us every day last year at the hospital. I called my friend Laura and she said it would be okay to come down and see Jay. Laura has been busy every minute arranging food and logistics and even working out a schedule for people to be Shomer Guf for Sandy's body. She asked us if we would be at the funeral home tomorrow about 8:15 a.m. Saul could not because he is in the midst of finals and had arranged for Larry to administer some tests so that he can attend the funeral at Adath Jeshurun. Little did we know that when he covered Larry's classes while he was sick before Pesach (he never did make it to the sedarim) that we would be asking him to return the favor so soon. When Laura heard that Saul could not be with me to stay with Sandy's body, she tried to let me off the hook, saying she would try to locate someone else. I told her that I wanted to be there, so now, sensitive lady that she is, she is trying to arrange someone else to keep me company. I am honored to have been asked either way. I have the perfect reading material to take with me. Larry bought me a Torah with a commentary from a woman's perspective for my birthday last month. I had been studying Tanach with Faith Rubin every Thursday for 20 years up until 2 years ago when I left Temple Sinai for Melrose B'nai Israel. Because the class was mostly women, and because it was Faith Rubin teaching, I think I have studied commentary from a woman's point of view. The book should have some interesting new tidbits to offer, though, I think.

Jay, who ordinarily is a very spry man, was moving around very slowly and deliberately so as to protect his injured ribs. His face was a little swollen on one side. Considering what he has been through in the last 36 hours, he appeared to be handling the situation as best he could surrounded by his children and those who love him. I remember when Aunt Sarah died, Uncle Jack said that the reality of the loss comes when the shiva is over, everyone goes home, and you go upstairs and get into bed alone. Shiva is a comforting ritual that temporarily distracts from the loss of normalcy until the initial shock has worn off. Saul and I printed a large version of the beautiful photo that was taken at the black and white party to give to Jay to help remember the good times. They had just taken a vacation in Paris for Jay's 60th birthday.

Larry Shipper sent this link with the details of the accident and a photo of Sandy that does not do justice to her bubbly demeanor. As we arrived to see Jay, everyone was preparing to meet with reporters who were coming to interview them to publicize the injustice perpetrated by drunk drivers. Unfortunately, I think that no matter what the publicity or consequences are against drunk drivers, there will always be people with no self-respect and no respect for others who will continue their evil habits. Who knows? One of us may be a future victim. We need to keep plugging away to get the message across, because if it had reached just that one irresponsible drunk woman, Sandy might still be with us today.


Ari said...

I'm really proud of you for doing this. As we always say, the greatest mitzvah you can perform is one a person cannot do for themselves.

sabasenders said...

I aggree and so did mom. She did not even hesitate. She just stepped up to the plate. I am so proud of her. This is in response to Ari's comments.