|My aunt Joanie & daughter, last vacation together|
My uncle still calls me "roomie" affectionately. My aunt and uncle relocated to Orlando in the early nineties and there our lives converged when I was 23. Fresh out of college, I interviewed for my first teaching job in Orlando on a Friday, was offered the job on Sunday night and started Monday morning. I needed a place to stay since I was currently residing in Jacksonville. She offered it. I joined her family, baby Kelsey and her husband, on Baker Street and stayed for two and half months. That is what family does.
After enduring rounds of chemo and blood transfusions over the holiday season, the new year brought the sentence of chemo-resistant transfusion-dependent leukemia, an insidious blood cancer. My aunt's life expectancy dwindled swiftly from "we will beat this" to "a matter of days to live." She chose to spend her final days in hospice. She welcome the last goodbyes and weathered the pain.That is what strength does.
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