[photo by Rodger]
Today's adventure began last night with a phone call that Rodger's mom had died peacefully in her sleep earlier that evening. After long weeks of waiting there was an immediate sense of relief, that surely Maxine herself must also have felt, and then a deep sadness and grief.
I was blessed with pretty much the perfect mother-in-law. We clicked immediately, from the evening when we first met, 18 years ago, and I couldn't stop laughing as I told a favorite story about my brother claiming to be an amphibian when he was a little guy. I was suddenly laughing so hard I couldn't get the words out, and I looked across the table and there she was laughing just as hard, while our men looked on with bemused looks on their faces.
She was always fun company and when her health was good we loved the same kind of adventures - lunches in interesting restaurants, poking around fabric and craft shops, and visiting museums. We also enjoyed the same kinds of movies and spent a good bit of time watching those together. I even remember she and my father-in-law came to visit for our birthdays (my sweetie and I have the same one) when I was turning 30 and she kindly sat through a completely narcissistic afternoon of home movies as I took a long trip down memory lane.
But what we really excelled at was talking. Maxine had the heart of a philosopher. We solved all the world's problems together, mixed in with much laughter. And she was never anything but supportive. I can still hear her voice in my head saying, "I love you, Liz." Oh, my dear, dear Maxine, I love you, too! Thank you for everything. You were the bee's knees, Billie Maxine!