Celebrations of Life--Molly Ivins, are you listening?

Sunday afternoon I went to my friend and supervisor's home to celebrate her life with dozens of her friends and family. Her husband and son welcomed us all with both joy and sadness and endured heartfelt vignettes that painted a poignant portrait of an extraordinary and wonderful woman who meant the world to many people. I encountered two people who stood out to me in very different ways. One woman introduced herself, and after chatting for a few moments, I was struck by a sense of familiarity. With a sense of certainty, I said, "I know you," and proceeded to ask questions that peeled the layers of the onion that is my life until we arrived at Denton, Texas, 1965-67, when we were both married to jazz musicians and our paths had crossed for a time. It so happens that her first husband had googled me last year, called me up from Las Vegas, NM, and one of the first things I asked him was "where is J now?" There are no longer six degrees of separation, only two at the outside...My friends had belonged to a book group together, and a circle was completed.

Another woman was wearing a colorful jacket and jaunty velvet cap, smiling from behind large, black framed glasses. My friend belonged to another bookclub with this woman, Molly Ivins, and I restrained myself from falling at her feet, for Molly is hands down one of my favorite writers, and one of my personal sheros. There are only a few, very special women that I would like to be reincarnated as, and Molly tops my list, which also includes Barbara Jordan, Bonnie Raitt, and Cindy Chang. When my friend lost her hair to chemo, I offered to shave my head in solidarity, but she would not allow me to do so. Molly, if you ever read my blog, I make the same offer to you--I would proudly bare my head to stand in solidarity with one of the most eloquent, funny, brave, loving women I know. Molly, my hat's off to you, bald or hairy.


cchang said...

Whoa, I'm not up there with Molly Ivins. That woman is a goodess---a damn funny one -- but a goddess nonetheless. You met her? (bow's at Claudia's feet). Wow. T and I saw her during Prarie Home Companion when it came through Austin. Fantastic!

I think that is wonderful that you offered to shave your head when your friend was going through cancer. What a sincere way to show your support.