I lost someone who was one of the mother figures I've been lucky enough to have in my, for lack of another word, colorful, life. I stopped to see her in a Boston hospital on my way to the airport and sat with her for over an hour, looking at old pictures. Her last words to me were, "We'll have a good time."
She will unfortunately be remembered by a lot of people who didn't know her as something she wasn't, because part of her vast life story was made into someone else's movie. Like most characters, there was a shard of truth, and like most characters, a ton of falsehood. She was a mother to a lot of kids like me, and took in strays until the end. She was the only one who gave me hope that I would ever be pretty, taking me aside one day to tell me I wouldn't always be chubby, that I'd "slim down" and not to worry, I would be beautiful.
In the hospital, when she asked me to get her a cup of coffee, I jumped up to get one, because that's something we always did. The nurse laughed at me. "Coffee? No! You can feed her some ice chips." So I did, and rubbed her hair, because I knew that's what she liked. She fell asleep, and as I was leaving I told her not to worry, the house was clean.
Rest in peace, Alice.