This morning, my mom called me to tell me that my grandmother had passed away at 101 years old.
Not unexpected. She’s had failing health for many years. I received a phone call about eight years ago that they didn’t think she would make it through the night. Miraculously, she did. At that point, I was pretty sure she was going to outlive us all.
I remember many things about my grandmother.
- I remember trips to church, the church that she and my grandfather so dearly loved. She took care of the flowers and he took care of a lot of the maintenance around the church.
- I remember trips to the zoo. Trips on the ferry to Kingston. Trips on their boat out in the Sound, either just putzing around or fishing.
- I remember her driving home from church in her Pontiac GTO, burning rubber at stoplights.
- I remember her gingerbread. I remember that she made the best cookies ever, called Jubilee Jumbles. For me.
- I remember she loved my brother and I and my two cousins.
- I remember she loved people. More than anything, I remember she loved people. She went out of her way to love people.
I remember that my grandmother was a strong, confident woman. She loved God. She loved people. She loved my grandfather. She loved to have fun. She loved to garden.
But most of all, I remember she loved me. No matter what, my grandmother loved me. 100%.
The last few years, even though I lived two miles away from her, I didn’t get over to see her as often as I should have. She had failing health, I was “too busy” or honestly, I wasn’t interested in seeing her in her state of failing health. She had Alzheimer’s and the one of the last times I saw her, she didn’t recognize me. I knew it wasn’t her. I knew it was the disease.
I loved my grandmother with all my soul. Always have, always will. I will miss her. But I know, deep down, she is in Heaven. My grandfather is rejoicing because he has his wife back. My grandmother is happy because she is out of pain and she is in her forever home with my grandfather and her friends who left this world before her.
I’ll miss you Gram. Truly I will. Thank you for the love you showed me and showed others. I’ll see you again someday, I’m sure of that.