I wrote here about two friends of mine I met on my mission named Jacques and Marlyse. When I last wrote about Marlyse, she was battling cancer and there was a good chance she would die. I last heard from her in June of 2011, and she wasn't doing well.
Since our last communication, I have tried this past year to get in touch with her and Jacques, to no avail. I feared Marlyse had passed away, but I had no confirmation...until last night.
Last night I felt the prompting to write them again and I did so. This got me to thinking about our time together, and so I surfed the net looking for any information about them that I could. I saw their house on GoogleMaps and thought how wonderful it is that modern technology can allow us to see a friend's house on the other side of the world. I was reminded of the good times we had when I visited Jacques and Marlyse.
And then I stumbled across Marlyse's obituary. She actually died two months after her last email to me. I was saddened by her death, but more so by the fact that it took me over a year to find out. I was surprised that Jacques hadn't let me know. I'm sure it wasn't intentional, but it hurt just the same.
I imagine how empty Jacques' life must be without Marlyse. She was his rock, and she is what often kept him together. I mourn for his loss and wonder how he's doing. I hope he's okay. I wrote him again hoping he receives my email and knowing that I feel his pain.
Jacques and Marlyse have always been very important to me. I often referred to them as my Belgian parents. I am sad that I have lost my Belgian mother and equally disheartened that it took so long for me to find out about it.
It's weird that I found out about this just when I'm going through so much angst with my own mom. It's probably not a coincidence.
Rest in peace, Marlyse. I love you.