Ina Sez Goodbye

Posted by: on Jun 1, 2017 | No Comments

Ina Sez Goodbye

Allie, Grandma Ina and Zach at the Steely Dan Concert in Bend Oregon

On Friday, May 26th, my beloved mother-in-law, Ina Bruskin, passed away after a six month battle with pancreatic cancer. This morning I think she came to Linda and me to say goodbye.

We all know that one of the great mysteries of life is what happens next? Is there life after death? I have no idea but I can tell you from personal experience that strange things have happened to our family when people close to us have left us for that great unknown. I don’t think anyone can explain it but they just do.

The first time this happened was many years ago. My wife’s Uncle Eric’s wife passed away from breast cancer. The night she passed away, the phone rang in our apartment at around 2:30 in the morning. There was no one on the other line. Later that day we found out that other members of Linda’s family had the same experience.

12 years ago my father-in-law (Stuart) passed away. He loved our dog Ripley and Ripley loved him right back. One night while sitting shiva (the Jewish period of mourning) at our house, Ripley sat perfectly still by the front door, the way she always did when someone was petting her. As there was a good bit of activity in the house at the time, this was very unusual behavior for Ripley. Linda and I watched, and we both thought the same thing…it was Stuart saying goodbye to Ripley and to us.

And the latest moment came this morning. During her illness, mom came to live with us for the better part of 3 months. She spent much of her time in our TV room, watching TV and resting. She was also constantly pushing the wrong button on the TV remote to the point where it would have made a good Abbott & Costello routine. It felt like every night I’d hear her voice calling for me, “Ira…there’s something wrong with the TV!”

What was wrong with the TV is that mom had pushed a button she shouldn’t have. Usually she’d change the input mode so there was no signal. She also would records shows that she wasn’t even watching. I checked one day and she had programmed the DVR for C-SPAN, as well as others channels. And believe me, mom was not watching C-SPAN.

She would also frequently turn on the closed captioning setting and that is where our story takes us. This morning I turned on the TV in our bedroom, and lo and behold, there it was. The closed captioning had been turned on and the hairs on the back of my neck started to tingle. I called Linda into the bedroom and showed her what had happened. To be quite honest, I was waiting for something, I just hadn’t said anything to Linda. I knew that a moment was going to come where my mother-in-law was going to call to me in some way and there it was. “Ira, there’s something wrong with the TV!”

Yes mom, there’s something wrong with the TV. You’re not here to watch with me.