lettre de condoleances and a tribute to Mary Glen
Thursday, July 31, 2014
With this flower, called Love in a Mist, we shower the Glen family with our support. May today's words speak for all of us here--all who have followed Tanya's story of the search for her Mom. Missing for five days, Mary Glen was found Wednesday night, having passed away.
le souvenir de temps heureux
: the memory of happy times
Lettre de Condoléances pour la famille Glen
Sympathy Letter for the Glen family
Dear Tanya and family,
Words fail to express what complete strangers, as well as those closest to you, are feeling right now for your dear family. Tanya, you introduced yourself in a letter, over a year ago, telling me you had married a Frenchman and were planning on coming to France. You didn't speak French and needed help expressing yourself in another language. Someone (Sandy? Monique?) told you about my language blog.
I may have told you then to rest assured, you are in good company: that made at least two of us who struggled to speak French! And today, having woken up to news about your Mom's passing, I struggle even to speak English.
It was another reader--Trina--who emailed me the news this morning. Like many, she did not know you personally, but the moment she read your story she was with you, avec coeur. Trina writes:
My heart goes out to all of you, to Mary's friends and family. You are all in my prayers.
Still unsure of what to say at this heartbreaking time, I will use Trina's example. And gathering everyone near--all who are reading--we will borrow words from the French and do our best to comfort you, showering you with our collective sympathies. With hopes that the pain you are feeling will ease, petit à petit, and that you will bravely continue on with your petite et adorable famille, the one you have recently founded. And may your proud father and loving sister be by your side and you by their side, for the remainder of this life.
Mary Glen, left. Tanya, right, with her father. Kassi, Tanya's sister is in blue. Photo credit: Rebecca Dever at www.charmingphoto.com
May memories of your dear Mom carry you gently forward to France and beyond. Wherever you go, your Maman is in your heart. And we thank you for putting her in our own hearts, too. What a privilege to have met your Mom via your photos and words; what a joy to have learned about Mary Glen "the most loving person you could ever meet."
The above words were your own, Tanya, and here are the French words I promised. I will do my best to translate them, but remember, I struggle along with you in this "language of love." Oui, amour éternel, just like a mother's love.
Que le souvenir de temps heureux vous aide à supporter cette pénible épreuve. Sachez que votre peine est comprise et partagée par ceux qui vous aiment.
May the memories of happy times help you through this painful hardship. Know that your pain is felt and shared by those who love you.
Kristin and friends here at French Word-A-Day
To the Glen family: Every bud on the sunflowers and every blossom on the bougainvillea reaching all the way to the heavens represents our collective faces here in this language community. You don't know us but we stand facing you at this difficult time, extending our support and offering our respect in memory of the beloved and beautiful Mary Glen.
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For more online reading: The Lost Gardens: A Story of Two Vineyards and a Sobriety