Tuesday, August 28

Audrey Berdusco (Cameron) April 25 1928 - August 17 2007

This has been longer in coming than for my Nonno. Maybe it is harder to write down 22 years of history with Nana because she was the second to leave, the last in their home. I keep being asked what I would like from their home, be it furniture, jewelry, books, etc. Those aren't the things that mattered to me though.
If I wanted something to remember time with her it would have to be old worn cards, with the blue designs on the back. We used to stay up past my bedtime, her with her coffee in a big mug and saucer and a cigarette (until she started pretending she no longer smoked), and play 1 to 13.
Some old coins possibly since she would take out her coin collection (Buffalo nickels, bills from 1923, Scottish currency) and pour over it coin by coin so she could tell me the story behind it.
Old photographs. Family meant everything to Nana and she had dug up and saved photos from the dawn of photography. She had few living relatives (save some distant cousins) but she would tell me stories of her mother and father and uncles and show pictures of their lives at the turn of the century.
The little glass animals we used to play with in the family room.

One thing no one could deny about her is that she was so strong. As an only child she married the oldest of 8 children and would often be left to take care of the youngest of them while the in-laws we out or away. Not only did she care for nonno and her 5 children but she seemed to draw needy people to her and never refused them: neighbours with abusive husbands, ailing parents and in-laws, local children. Even in her last year our distant cousin began helping with her renovations in his free time outside school and sports practice. In the few months they spent together she treated him like a grandson and he saw her as a grandmother that he never had. He was a pallbearer and it meant quite so much to see that she was still doing what she did best at the end of her life.

She spent her last few weeks in the hospital meant that we were somewhat prepared and I was able to visit regularly. Sometimes she would be too confused or uncomfortable to hold a conversation but others she would be completely coherent. Even while she suffered she would encourage me. She would ask me questions about my plans for the future, my plans to travel but then nod and assure me that I would always make the right choice. One afternoon I brought out my Bible and I read her some Psalms (Ps. 23 seemed an obvious choice but she had it memorized as the faithful Christian she was her whole life). We got to talking about heaven and somehow I ended up talking about our new bodies and new life after death in Jesus. Just while i was thinking she didn't want to hear what i had to say she put her hand over mine and said "This has really made me glad. " I miss my grandmother, there is so much more to say but I will end by saying I hope I can touch half as many lives as she did.

1 comment:

Sophy Romvari said...

Hello! Im sure this comes at you from out of the blue, but I have a very special request for you..
I am a filmmaker in Vancouver BC, a student. I have directed a short film about an old man coming to terms with the death of his wife and his oncoming death as well. It is a beautiful story. I found the video of Audrey and Attilio-berdusco's wedding on youtube as I was looking for old video footage to put in my film. I think this is a beautiful video. The part of the film it is meant to be used for is a slide show that our main character watches, reflecting on his life. I am writing you to request your approval to use a short 20 second clip from this video. Upon my research, both Audrey and Attilio have passed, but you are related to them. If you accept my proposal, I would greatly appreciate it. I would be happy to send you the finished film as well.

If you could send me an e-mail at sophyromvari@gmail.com as soon as you can, I can't tell you how much I appreciate it.

Take care,