She visited Florida in spite of their politics. While she did not relish traveling to that state, she loved to spend time at Disney World. For her it was an oasis of happiness in a swamp of disagreement.
She was cautious of COVID, following the rules the whole time. She showed concern for her immunocompromised work colleagues who acted invincible. Their deaf ears led to her eventually stepping back, allowing them to make their own choices. Yet she continued to take care, not wishing to put them at risk by any of her choices.
No one will ever know if she caught COVID in Florida or before her arrival. I guess it’s better said that COVID caught her in Florida. Cold symptoms, sweating, weakness, ER, low blood pressure, positive COVID test, sepsis, plan for ICU, heart stopped, CPR, and it was finished. So, so quickly it was finished. Did COVID give her sepsis or did it weaken her immune system so something else could? Was there something else underlying? Does it matter?
Our dear friend of twenty-two years, a second mother to our kids, a wonderful, kind, thoughtful, just, passionate, funny, and fun woman is gone much, much too soon.
We learned of her death through FaceTime calls with her eldest - before, during, and after. We were at a cross country meet. Many of her friends were there with us and we became a bawling, hugging mess. I recall the day before I had seen the upcoming hometown meet on the calendar and had a fleeting thought that Kim would be there even though her harrier youngest daughter had graduated two years prior. A fleeting thought.
We collected ourselves, loaded the van, and made our way home. When our city was visible from the highway, rain had just stopped falling and there was a massive, technicolor-bright double rainbow over the town. So bright that you could see the clear swatch of it in front of the trees, mere feet from the road. After that rain, I imagine the hummingbirds were out just like the sunshine, bringing their whirring, squeaking noises to the air in search of something sweet. Celebrating the fresh, rain-soaked fall air.
Kim loved hummingbirds.
The fall colors looked like they were not backing down. Unheralded, an occasional gust would bring a flurry of leaves swinging back and forth to the ground. And there’s more rain in the forecast.