It was sudden. Just yesterday morning, I finished the eulogy my brother-in-law, Bob Johnson asked me to write for his memorial service, and I sent it to him. By noon that same day, he face- timed me to tell me how grateful he was for what I’d written. I wanted him to hear it before he passed, and to know what would be spoken of him. We joked with each other just briefly and before we hung up I told him I loved him. He winked at me and repeated his love for me. Little did I know.

He was gone at 5:30.

My sister, Sigrid called Pam and me soon after with the news. We were stunned. I couldn’t speak. Sig and I just looked at each other. Her eyes embroiled in tears, and my face as stone. We barely spoke. She was obviously in some manner of shock, but trying to be strong. After dealing with ALS, and everything that entails…she didn’t have a lot of strong left in her. She told us she didn’t want to notify anyone just yet. She needed time to take it all in and have some semblance of centeredness in order to get through these next days. Her boys, Andrew and Peter are with her, and that’s a huge comfort.

I’ve been walking around in a zombie state…and so thankful to have Pam. I just wanted to make today go away. I went to the grocery store to get a few things, and as I walked, I heard a song from a playlist entitled “Lullabye” written by Jeremy Lubbock, a gifted orchestrator I’ve worked with on several occasions. It is sung by Chaka Khan. As I listened, the music brought me to tears as I walked thru the aisles.

When I came to the checkout, the lady could see that my eyes were red. “Having a hard day?“I told her that it was a sad day, a beautiful day and shocking all rolled up into one. Her affirming nod and understanding eyes felt like a hug to me.

I know it’s a lullaby…but it’s what brought me comfort.

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