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» Hatrack River Forum » Archives » Landmark Threads » 4000 Tears Shed

   
Author Topic: 4000 Tears Shed
Raia
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I had intended to write a formal tribute to my cousin for my 4000 post landmark... something I would plan out ahead of time, edit, and possibly give a written copy to her parents, my aunt and uncle. However, it's 10:00 pm on December 31st... and I decided instead to write something straight from the heart, unplanned, unrefined. This is just pouring out me. I couldn't think of anything that would serve as a better tribute than just pure emotion sparked by this tragic event.

The year will be over in a few short hours. It's hard to believe how much can happen in a year, both tragic and wonderful. When I think back on what a year it's been... never mind. I can't finish that thought.

Today was Tiltan's matzevah... that's where they put her gravestone on her grave. It's interesting that they chose to have it on the day of New Year's Eve. It sort of concludes the year, all of its events, in one short ceremony. The grave they made was beautiful. It's the first time I've ever seen one in color. The stone itself was just polished limestone, but on it were the words:

תלתן אבני
רק בת 14 אביבים

(Rough Translation): "Tiltan Avni
Only saw fourteen springtimes"

with a vivid, green four-leafed clover etched into the limestone beneath it. Underneath, the date according the Jewish calendar, and the date according to the national solar one. That's it. That's what's left. Fourteen years my cousin gave life to her surroundings, and touched the hearts of everyone she met... and all that remains is a piece of limestone with her name on it. Placed in the earth on the very day that happily oblivious people are celebrating the conclusion of a year full of emotion, full of laughter, full of love, full of life.

As I write this, I am filled with more emotion than I can even begin to comprehend. It seems unfair to celebrate, by drinking champagne and dancing, when such a year has been so eventful. At times like this there seems little to be thankful for. At times like this I take it upon myself to question Fate -- to try and understand how a day such as this is possible. Does the coming new year bring hope, and prospects of a fresh start, a new beginning? But for some, it can't be the beginning. The end has already come and gone. I ponder the hundreds of thousands of people being killed by a natural disaster, beyond anyone's control, off the coast of Sumatra. I think back on stories from the news, of murder, of death. None of these people got a chance to start over, with the coming of a new January, a new moon.

Some of us may live to be ninety. Some of us may see ninety January moons show their silvery faces, looking down upon this world which we have come to know and love. Each time, the experience is a new one; never does the same moon affect us in the same way. Ninety times we may be enthralled by this natural phenomenon, and thank whoever we feel it within us to thank that we are here to witness this moment.

Even if I, myself, live to be ninety, my whole perspective on this moon will have changed. The new year will no longer bring closure, and a new beginning. To me, the anticipation of each new year will lead up to a day of meditation, of silent tribute to those who are no longer around to enjoy it.

It occurs to me now that I have never once seen Tiltan on the new year. I have never seen her face glow with the excitement of awaiting the new moon. This year, when, up until November 24th I had lived physically closer to her than ever before, would most likely have been the first time we would have had the chance to share this momentous occasion together. Instead, I am sitting at home, in my dorm room, slowly understanding that this will never happen. I am writing this on New Year's Eve, alone, drowning in my tears, trying to write final papers, while all around me colleagues and mentors alike are getting blissfully drunk, and enjoying each others' company.

תלתני: אני רק רוצה שתדעי -- עם עשיתי בחיי משהו שהכעיב לך, לעולם זה לא כאב לאף-אחד כמו שזה כואב לי אכשיו. אני אוהבת אותך עד סוף העולם וחזרה, ומתגעגעת אליך יותר ממה שאני יכולה לתער. אני חושבת עליך כל הזמן, ומכללת את כל העולם שאנחנו לא נמצאות ביחד היום, חוגגות שנה שבה אנחנו יכולות לבלות ביחד בלי לדעוג כל הזמן שהטיסה שלי תגיע, ואני אסע. להתראות תיתו -- למרות שבאמת, חלק ממך עוד נמצא כל עוד אנחנו ממשיכים לזכור. ואני יכולה להגיד שאני לעולם לא אשכח. בהמון, המון אהבה (יותר ממה שהגוף שלי מסוגל להחזיק), -שניני

(I had intended to write more, in English, but I'm now crying so hard that I can't even see the screen anymore.)

Everyone... I wish you all, from the very bottom of my heart, a happy New Year.

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Derrell
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(((((Shani))))) May the new year bring you peace. That was a beautiful tribute.
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Boris
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(((Raia))) Thank you. You are such a wonderful person. I only wish I had a fraction of the beautiful spirit you show.
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Elizabeth
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Raia, I think you are celebrating the new year with her. She is firmly enacased in your heart.
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Alcon
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(((Shani)))
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Synesthesia
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*hugs*
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dread pirate romany
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Raia, that is a beautiful and heartfelt tribute. wishing you much peace, for you and your family.
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Narnia
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(((Shani)))

Honey I hope you can look forward to this new year through your tears and see possiblities for healing and happiness in your life and the lives of your family memebers. I think that Tiltan would want that for you, and I have no doubt that she'll be very much with you in spirit and thought as you look at the January moon in all your coming years.

God bless you Raia.

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whiskysunrise
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((((Raia))))
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AvidReader
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((Raia))

I'll never look at the moon the same way again.

Don't cry for Tiltan. She isn't gone. She's just on the next leg of a wonderous journey. You'll see her again.

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breyerchic04
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I think daniel is brilliant so I'm saying exactly what he said

((((((shani)))))

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Noemon
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(Raia)
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punwit
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(((Raia))) Your words carve the pain of your loss upon my heart. I wish you the best and pray that the hurt will fade and you will remember your cousin with fondness rather than grief.
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ReikoDemosthenes
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((((Shani))))

that was wonderful...so sad and so wonderful...thank-you

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Kwea
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I am sorry for your loss, and hope that it will eventually mellow to the point that you can remember her and the good times you shared without such pain.

Kwea

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imogen
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(((((Raia)))))

Thank-you for sharing such a beautiful and heartfelt tribute to your cousin.

It's quite clear through your words that it's not just a gravestone that remains - rather the memories of your cousin will live in you, and in the rest of your family forever.

I wish I could give you a real hug. [Frown]

(((Raia)))

***
I'm glad to see a post from you though - I hadn't seen anything around for ages. Glad to see you're ok, at least as well as you can be.

[ December 31, 2004, 08:38 PM: Message edited by: imogen ]

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Tatiana
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<<<<<<<<<<<Shani>>>>>>>>>>>>>
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Dagonee
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Raia, you've been through a lot this year. One day, when you are a little more removed from the immediate, pressing sorrow of your cousin's death, you'll be able to look on a new year's silver moon with a deeper, richer understanding of all that it entails. You may always feel a little sadness about her death when you do, but you'll also be able to imagine viewing it with her and feel a little joy about her life.

Dagonee

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babager
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(((Raia))) Thank You for sharing yourself with us. I am saddened by your loss. I wish I was as eloquent in expressing myself as you are, so that I could convey how deeply your tribute affected me. [Frown]
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quidscribis
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Raia, I think what you're going through is pretty normal, given the circumstances. It's good to give yourself time to grieve, but also, when you're ready, allow yourself to remember the good times with happiness, too. It's hard, but it gets better. [Group Hug]
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Dragon
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(((Raia)))

Thank you for sharing your tribute to your cousin with us. You've altered my perspective on life, and I thank you for it.

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larisse
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Raia,

That was a beautiful tribute. The hardest words in any language are "should have been". They are filled with regret and sorrow. Your cousin should have been there to celebrate the new year with you. She should have been there to stare at the new year's moon with you. She should have been there to grow up, to learn how wonderful she truly could become.

I know that no amount of words will help you right now, so all I am going to do is give you a hug and let you know you touched my heart.

{{{Raia}}}

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Bob_Scopatz
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Thanks Raia.
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rivka
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שני, יקרי ומתוקי, אין לי המילים לנחם אותך. רק יש לי דמעות להוסיף לדמעות שלך. אני אתפלל שתהיה לך שלום בליבך - לא במקום הדמאות, כי לעולם תהיה מקום להם פה - אבל ביחד אתם.       רבקה
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Trisha the Severe Hottie
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(((Raia)))
I've been wondering how you were.

I never thought December would be a happy time for me. My son died December 7 1992 and my nephew died December 17, 1994. I don't sent out Christmas cards. I'm lucky if I can send out bills, even.

But 14 years is long enough, we got a new nephew this December. Really, it only took 8 years before I started to enjoy life again for its own sake.

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Sara Sasse
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(Raia)

I hope you feel better soon.

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Space Opera
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((Raia)) Just a hug, that's all.

space opera

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Mrs.M
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Shani, I can't say how sorry I am.
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Morbo
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((((Shani)))) Thank you for sharing your pain about Tiltan.
Spider Robinson wrote that shared pain is decreased, and shared joy is increased.
I hope the new year brings you joy.

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Raia
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*hugs everyone*

Thank you so much for your beautiful comments. Every single one of your posts made me tear. I just love all the wonderful people at Hatrack... although this isn't really a situation that can be made better, all of you made me smile a little more. [Smile]

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Raia
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Addition for 2005:

Just a small supplement...

January 8th, 2005: Today was the day when my family visited my dad's cousin in the hospital, who, in the night, gave birth to a baby girl.

The new year symbolized many things for me, and for my family; the January moon really did mark the end of an era, and the beginning of a new one. I stood looking at my new cousin, and I was struck by how absolutely beautiful she is. She looks a lot like my sister, when she was born.

I looked at her, and the tears were streaming down my face. I was so happy to be there, so happy to see the beginning of a new life, so happy to witness the moment when a family member of mine can begin to explore what it means to be alive, rather than depart before she has had the chance to do so. I could not help (though I promise I tried) visualizing Tiltan leaning over the crib and making cooing noises, and adding her moment in welcoming the baby into the world. All of these things together, the grief from last year and the joy from the new one, combined to create an emotion which I have never felt before.

I miss Tiltan dearly, and wish more than anything that she were here, but I realized today that life not only goes on, but begins again... while I'm still horribly upset by this, and probably will be for a very long time, I'm overjoyed at the birth of my new cousin. Life really can be beautiful.

Tiltan, I hope you realize how much I miss you, and how much I wish you were here... I wish you could see Shmulik and Ayelet's baby, she's beautiful, and you would love her. [Group Hug]

I guess I didn't have any specific reason for posting this, just almost a self-reassurance that depressed "life cannot go on" feelings about my cousin's death don't help anything. While I still feel them sometimes, the world all around me is still moving. I guess it took a dramatically joyous occasion for me to realize that.

I'm still crying now, like I did when I posted the original landmark, but now my tears are different. Hila (as they're thinking of calling her, but they're not sure yet) needs to see a world that has joy, as well as sadness; she needs to see people laugh, as well as people cry.

I will do my best. *wipes tear*

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JaneX
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((((Raia))))
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Anna
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(((Raia)))
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