I used to have a neighbor, S. She lived in my building and used to have a cute little terrier. She was a retired teacher, drove a beautiful BMW and used to travel all over the place. As a lifelong singleton, she became friends with another neighbor she had a best friend in the building. If you saw one of them, you saw the other. S was intelligent with a sharp wit and zest for life.

About two years ago, her friend retired and moved to Phoenix. Not long after that, her dog died. Then she got hit by a car. Now, this wasn’t a bad accident as far as accidents go: the car somehow took a turn too tight and grazed her thigh. S did not require a hospital stay, but still, women in her late sixties…it was a lot of stuff in a short period of time.

Her health did seem to get worse after the car accident. All of a sudden other ailments started to pop up. After never having health issues her entire life, she now seemed to face colds and aches and such weekly.

She decided that now would be a great time to move to Florida. Her best friend was gone. Her dog was done. She really had no family in the area. Plus, it’s cold in New York half of the year.

Just as she was getting ready to list her apartment on the market, she developed pneumonia. It was a bad case: she was hospitalized and later had to move in to a rehab facility.

After a few months she returned to our building, this time with a walker. It was shocking to be to see how quickly her health had deteriorated. She had been robust and now she wasn’t.

Again she set to the task of actually selling her place and moving to Florida. Which she did. About six months ago, she flew down.

She rented a place until she found something she liked. One of my neighbors was in touch with her and she was not loving Florida so much. Her two friends in the area (the reason why she had chosen this town) both died within her first few months there.

She was alone, in a city she didn’t know, not in great condition, trying to start over.

She did find an apartment to buy, but then Corona came calling. She wasn’t able to close on her new apartment and move.

Finally, two weeks ago she closed!

Three days later she had a heart attack and passed.

I mourn her because she was such a nice person, warm hearted and funny and smart and I will remember her fondly. She loved my dog and I’d like to think that they’re somewhere playing.

Enjoy today. You really don’t know what will happen tomorrow.

80 thoughts on “One Thing After Another

      1. Exactly. Every day , and I try to be positive and grateful, but life has really been hitting my family hard. It’s quite discouraging. I am praying a lot, but ugh, some days. And although I am sad for your friends stretch of trouble, I can’t help but feel like she might be relieved it’s over. KWIM?

        Liked by 1 person

  1. That’s a story you hear often, especially if you already fall into that age group and like me, often contemplate what it might be like to venture to a new place. There are so many things I want to see, before I can’t, but that cloud definitely hangs over my head making me hesitate. Much more so now especially.

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      1. Oh that’s terrible to hear, I’m so sorry LA! Here in Australia it seems like a far off threat… less than 150 deaths, and mostly very very old people- I hang my head for you 💧❤️

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  2. I’m so sorry that the lady’s last years of life were filled with pain and loss. I guess that’s everybody’s deep seated fear. Not the Golden Years we were ‘promised’!

    Liked by 3 people

  3. There is no set application for life. I have watched children ignore their parents and met many divorced teachers travelling the world as a teacher in Abu Dhabi. Some used their time well and some went out partying all the time in an effort to “find someone.” In the end, I believe we are grateful for the adventures we had and I know I feel happy for the chances and even the risks I took. Many of us will outlive our husband and friends, so we must be happy for memories and je ne regrette rien. Enjoy your day.

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  4. I totally understand. My cousin who in his early sixties fell off my.aunts roof about 7 to 10 feet a week ago Friday. He was taken off life support yesterday. Life is fragile. Live today. Sorry for your loss.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. What a sad story….and I can relate. I’m sure that will be me some day after my mother is gone, as I have no other relatives here, and I can already see health issues popping up in my early sixties. Although it might be tempting to move somewhere new in retirement, especially someplace warm, there’s something to be said for familiarity. She might have fared better and been less lonely in a retirement community, as like one of your readers said, most women outlive their husbands. I’m sorry to hear about the Corona deaths….even if it’s not someone close, it’s still shocking to hear. What sad times we live in…..

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    1. Personally, none of the recent deaths were corona related. I knew four people who died this past week, stroke, heart attack and two after battles with cancer. Death just comes knocking. And yeah….how do we live out our lives?

      Liked by 1 person

  6. 😦 A very sad tail and I can tell through you writing it’s deeply affected you, they say with age comes wisdom, I’d advise any senior to think carefully before selling up and relocating, LA I’ve heard of SO many instances where there was no happy ending. Over here in the UK ‘Age Concern’s’ advice to pensioners who’ve just lost their partner is NOT to move. A sad story indeed 😦

    Liked by 4 people

  7. LA,
    I’m so sorry to hear about your neighbor. I agree, it’s the suddenness and finiteness, that hits you. As you know, we’ve had our own wake up call in this house. I hope you’re right and your neighbor and your dog and her dog are keeping each other company! 🙂 Mona

    Liked by 2 people

  8. What a sad story, but the harsh realities of life. It’s so difficult when your body begins to betray you. I’m fascinated by a couple of friends I know who are in their eighties and take zero medications! But their children, in their fifties, are suffering from multiple ailments. Said friend, 82, recently lost her daughter, 59. She’d had so many illnesses. I know that “time and unexpected events befall us all,” but it’s still hard accepting it sometimes. 😞

    Liked by 2 people

  9. My eyes are leaking. This is a wonderful tribute to her memory. I believe our mental state contributes greatly to our physical health and it makes me sad she may have struggled with this. She certainly was dealt a lot of challenges in a short time. I’m afraid I’ll be facing a lot of what she did in the coming years with Entrepreneur’s cancer diagnosis and four aging parents in their 80s.

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Eye-opening post for sure! In my work as an RN I see a lot of this type of thing. Many many times, all it seems to take is 1 “event” in a person’s life to change the entire trajectory. I had a person who worked very hard their entire life, never married or had children, and had so looked forward to retirement and had plans for many great things including travel. Finally retired and 6 months later took a fall at their home which led to one health crisis after another and has ultimately led to life in a tiny apartment, totally dependent upon home health workers for almost all activities of daily life……..for the remainder of their life. Life is fragile.

    Liked by 2 people

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