Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Sad Day

Friday morning my husband's 100 year old grandmother passed away (link to obit). For the past 10 or so years she has been living with Alzheimer's. I am lucky to have met her before her mind was clouded and her memories were lost. She was a beautiful person inside and out. Her passion for life was catching and when you were around her there was no doubt that she loved life.

My brother in law spoke at the funeral and talked about how when someone dies, the headstone reflects the date of birth and the date of death but in actuality it is the in between that matters most. During her life, she left an indelible mark on everyone she met. And while we mourn the loss, we celebrate the in between.

It is sad that she is gone but she is now in a place where her mind is at last clear again. I am thankful for the years that I knew her and know that one day I will see her again.

As a side note, I am awed by the fact that she lived 100 years. It is a testament to the kind of person that she was. Ironically I got an email a few days before her death detailing what life was like in 1908, the year she was born. I thought it interesting enough to pass along. It's amazing the changes that took place during her life!

In the year 1908...........

  • The average life expectancy was 47 years.
  • Only 14 percent of the homes had a bathtub.
  • Only 8 percent of the homes had a telephone.
  • There were only 8,000 cars and only 144 miles of paved roads.
  • The maximum speed limit in most cities was 10 mph.
  • The tallest structure in the world was the Eiffel Tower!
  • The average wage in 1908 was 22 cents per hour.
  • The average worker made between $200 and $400 per year .
  • More than 95 percent of all births took place at HOME .
  • Ninety percent of all doctors had NO COLLEGE EDUCATION!
  • Sugar cost four cents a pound.
  • Eggs were fourteen cents a dozen.
  • Coffee was fifteen cents a pound.
  • Most women only washed their hair once a month, and used Borax or egg yolks for shampoo.
  • The five leading causes of death were Pneumonia and influenza, Tuberculosis, Diarrhea, Heart disease and Stroke
  • The American flag had 45 stars.
  • The population of Las Vegas , Nevada, was only 30
  • Crossword puzzles, canned beer, and ice tea hadn't been invented yet.
  • There was no Mother's Day or Father's Day
  • Two out of every 10 adults couldn't read or write.
  • Only 6 percent of all Americans had graduated from high school.
  • Marijuana, heroin, and morphine were all available over the counter at the local corner drugstores. Back then pharmacists said, 'Heroin clears the complexion, gives buoyancy to the mind,regulates the stomach and bowels, and is, in fact, a perfect guardian of health'.
  • Eighteen percent of households had at least one full-time servant or domestic help.
  • There were about 230 reported murders in the entire US


Kim Eckhardt said...

So sorry for the loss. I know that she had a full life. Such a difference between 1908 and now, eh?