We could hear her screaming from the other side of the soccer field, giving directions, shouting encouragement, and even growling disapproval at bad calls, voicing our own outrage so effectively we didn't have to.
She was the epitome of a Mama Bear, fierce, loving, and protective of all of the girls on the Cosmos, TG's soccer team, equally. We were blessed to spend almost every weekend with her during soccer season for five years of our lives.
I knew her cancer wasn't responding to treatments. There was an open house a couple of weekends ago for friends to come and see her, but it was a long, tiring day at the winery and I decided I was too pooped and yucky to go that evening.
Instead, I decided I would grab TG and we would pay Christine a quick visit one evening the next week. I knew she'd want to see TG more than me, anyway. But that week sped by, and the next, without "finding the time"...and now it's too late to see her again in person, give her a last hug, and tell her thank you in person.
Because Christine passed away on Monday.
My good intentions lie dried out, crumbled in a pile of ashes before me, so learn from my mistake and grab yours into a bouquet while they're fresh. Carry them to the person you need to see again... the person you need to hug or kiss or say forgive me or thank you or whatever...because time doesn't bend to our convenience. It's on its own schedule and doesn't give a damn for ours.
Coach Christine was fierce, passionate, and all heart. I doubt her good intentions ever wilted even the teensiest bit.
I'm grateful she was a part of our lives, even though it was for a short time, and regretful that I didn't get to give her one last hug and thank you in person. She was an inspiration to me (and I'm sure to TG) and I'm better for knowing her.
Rest in peace, Coach...although I know you're really still there on the sidelines, pacing up and down, keeping an eye on those you love, giving support, encouragement, and protection. Your voice may have been silenced, but never your heart.