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Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Leap Day

My mother had a school friend born on Leap Day. When the friend was sixteen, her pals threw her a birthday party for her fourth birthday, pin-the-tale-on-the-donkey and all. The gifts were suitable for the number of actual birthdays she'd had as well.

My mom used to tell us this story every Leap Year, and I always thought to myself, "Actually Leap Day would be a good day to die." Now that I'm older I realize that it probably wouldn't be a relief to family and friends not to have the actual anniversary of your death every year; in fact it might make the loss even worse, not having a day to remember the person who was no longer there.

I guess we'll find out. Though I don't believe in stuff like this, I feel like I've cursed this day a bit. My husband's aunt (on his mother's side, aged 91) has been gravely ill for weeks, and last night the doctors called the family to come in, as they said she would probably not survive the night and if she did, would not make it through today. (As of now, she is still with us.) And this morning my husband's uncle (on his father's side, late 80s) suddenly passed away. I didn't know this uncle, but did know fairly well the aunt, a brave and guileless woman with a convoluted lifestory I couldn't have made up if I'd tried.

Obviously I didn't cause this with my glib comments about dying on Leap Day, but I still feel weirdly creeped out and guilty. Sigh.

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