Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Cousin Muszka 1964 - 2012

My cousin died Monday night in Paris after a long and valiant struggle with cancer.

Born September 18, 1964, in Paris, Cousin Muszka (family nickname, I didn't make it up) glowed with life.

Muszka (left), at 2 months old, meeting my sister (center) for the first time. Her  mother (right) supervises. My sister is 14 months old in this picture.
She had wonderful almost-black curls, dark brown eyes, and deep dimples. Her laughter was infectious. She was fluent in at least 3 languages, spoke French with a Parisian accent, and English with a Brooklyn accent. It was hilarious to hear her talking to her mom going back and forth between French and English in the same sentence.

Muszka at play. I don't know when or where this picture was taken.
Whenever she came to visit, she and my sister were inseparable. They were as close as two people who are usually separated by an ocean could be.
Muszka and my sister, probably in March of 1969, when I was born.
I don't remember being jealous of their closeness at all, but I do remember wishing I were older and could be like them.
Passover, 1972. From left: Me, my sister, Muszka.
Passover weekend 1972. Back porch of my mom's house. From left: Muszka, my sister, me.
Muszka often came for long visits in the Summer, and for shorter ones in the Winter. It was like having another sister, one who lived far away sometimes.
Summer of 1978. We are on the porch of a house on Fisher Beach in Cape Cod. From Left, Muszka, my sister, me.
Muszka on a winter visit. My sister's room.

Muszka was a professor of American History at a University in Paris. She was highly regarded in her field. She has a beautiful, smart, wonderful 14-year-old daughter (I couldn't find a picture of the two of them together this morning).

I believe this is from my grandma's 80th birthday party. From left: Grandma, Muszka, my aunt (her mom).
She leaves behind an empty space.
July 1989. My sister's wedding. 

I will miss her so much.

11 comments:

jo(e) said...

What a lovely tribute. How sad that she died so early.

Robin said...

I'm so sorry, Liz.
You wrote a beautiful tribute to her and to her place in your family.

Jenn said...

Liz, I'm so sorry. What a beautiful series of pictures, and from them and your words I understand what an amazing part of your family she was.

Yankee, Transferred said...

You paint such a loving portrait with this post. I'm so sorry, and I send my best Yankee love. XO

kathy a. said...

((( liz ))) much love to you and your family. this is such a wonderful remembrance.

Val said...

I'm so sorry, Liz.

Jody said...

I'm so sorry, Liz. My thoughts are with you and her family.

Two Sheds said...

So sorry. Thoughts and prayers to you and your family.

ken said...

Thanks, Liz, for posting your recollections and the lovely photos of our beloved cousin - Hugs, Love, Ken

Jadzia@Toddlerisms said...

I am so sorry. Her poor daughter.

Stevens Miller said...

Unexpectedly saw her teen-aged daughter at an impromptu partial family-gathering this week, and thought, "What's Muszka doing here?"

I liked Muszka. It was very cool to "see" her again, if only for a moment.