Saturday, January 11, 2014
Marlee G. was born in Lancaster, Pennsylvania in 1941, destined to be one of a kind. She was outspoken, did what she wanted to do and truly did not care what anyone else thought. She raised two sons pretty much by herself. She traveled and held jobs as an art dealer, a probation officer, a salesperson and in later years a case worker for both Western New Mexico Correctional and New Mexico Women's Correctional facilities in Grants, NM Marlee had an abundance of friends from every walk of life. She enjoyed the outdoors, especially the mountains. In her spare time she made jewelry, read and dabbled in arts and crafts. Her most notable hobby was the ability to collect knowledge from everything and everyone she touched. It was not part of her conscious life plan, but Marlee was diagnosed with lung cancer and eventually had to leave her job as a case worker. She chose to refuse suggested treatment, believing that what was going to happen was supposed to happen. She loved her home on Mt. Taylor and lived there as long as she was able with the help of hospice and friends. She began sorting through her extensive art collection and possessions from her travels. One by one she invited special friends to choose what she wanted to take home with them. One day Marlee announced to all who knew her that she had decided on the exact day she would die. Over the years she had tried out several religions and settled on Buddhism. She claimed Buddhists had been given the ability to decide when there last day on earth would be. She planned a party for the night before her chosen death date and invited her closest friends to attend. Whether her guests actually believed her or were just humoring their very ill friend is unknown. Of course, the next day she was still alive. It was a little embarrassing, but nothing stopped Marlee for very long. She continued to grow weaker and finally moved to Grants Good Samaritan Nursing Center, where she tried to make the best of still being alive. She made sure the nurses and staff knew she wanted to die. It was not a morbid wish and she did take her meds. Marlee just felt she was done with what she had come to earth to do and it was time to move on. She even had plans to come back as a healer in her next life. She was annoyed that God was not listening to her. Marlee was a very spiritual soul, in her own way. A few weeks before she died I had a strong feeling that I was supposed to visit her. I had at one time shared my spirit photographs with her. On my visit I gave her copies of a couple that I knew she especially liked. She was very grateful that I had stopped by and said, "There is no one here to talk to about spiritual things." Above all Marlee had a great sense of humor. Before I left I remarked, "You know you can't tell God when you are going to die, right?" Smiling she replied, "Yes, I know." Marlee finally got her wish in 2008 and like her life her memorial service was one of a kind. Her ashes were scattered by family and friends on the grounds of the Sandstone Bluffs in Cibola County. Her survivors include her sons, three grandchildren and her friends. One of her sons, after sharing his memories, summed up her life by saying, "My mother was an odd bird." The comment fit her to a tee and I'd be willing to bet Marlee joined in the laughter that followed. In honor of Marlee G. I am sharing a photo of the Sandstone Bluffs taken near where her ashes remain.