People often say that the best things come in small packages. That was true for Mary Arif. In a small, sweet, and selfless package she could be found. With a laugh rich with joy and a smile that made you feel important and cared for, she truly was the “best thing”. Though she may have seemed like the average woman to so many, to those who knew her she was a superhero… a woman who took care of those whom she loved, a woman who stood up for what was right, a woman whose children and grandchildren would grow to appreciate and admire her more and more with every passing hour.
She didn’t know she was seen as a role model, though. Or if she did, she stayed humble through it. In her later years, her dementia had taken over many things that she was once best known for. Her amazing memory and stories were gone.
As time moves on, we often lose parts of history; the names of those who have passed on are forgotten, stories aren’t remembered and details are lost in translation. We see it so often with ancient civilizations and even mere decades in the past can be forgotten. But to see it happen in the mind of a loved one right before your very eyes is difficult and heartbreaking. Watching Mary lose her memory wasn’t easy for anyone but what brings us comfort is that a person, though so often assumed to be the sum of their parts and memories, is more than that. A person is who they are when no one is looking, who they are when they have power and the way they choose to use it. They’re the soul beneath the skin, and the love in their hugs. They are more than just the sum of their parts.
Though Mary may have forgotten many things in her old age — her family names, where she was, and where her glasses went — the amazing woman before us all never changed. She never forgot who she was. And we will never forget either.
Nos plus sincères sympathies à la famille et aux amis de Arif Hammond Mary December 24 1924
November 30 2019..
Décès pour la Ville: Cranbrook, Province: Colombie britanique