On Easter morning of this year, my Grandma left this Earth to continue her soulful journey. Since I can remember, she has written each of us letters in our birthday cards. So, instead of writing about my grandma in this post, I’d like to take a moment to write her a letter.
It’s still surreal to me that you’ve passed and more often than not, I find myself just sitting and thinking of you. I think of your infectious smile and the grace you had when you carried yourself. And as silly as it sounds, I picture how, in some mysterious way, you made smoking a cigarette look sophisticated; like you were a queen. Now, I realize it’s because you were just that. Not in the royal throne type of way, but you were a sophisticated, loving, best Grandma in the world kind of queen. In my book, that’s the best kind. And I miss that part of you. Really, I just miss…you.
I cannot imagine my childhood without days spent at the Maple Syrup Festival with the entire family. I know that every single one of us grand kids share unforgettable memories from those weekends. From playing croquet in the backyard, playing catch with smelly walnuts that fell from the tree, or sitting on the front lawn watching the parade, collecting candy, and hiding from all of the scary clowns. (Or was that just me?) One of the best places to spend time together, for some strange reason, was in Grandpa’s office. We would take turns sitting in his big office chair, pretending to be lawyers, doctors, or whatever big wig job we could imagine at the time. Whatever we were, that chair made us important. You would always walk by and laugh at us, asking us what in the world we were doing. Neither of us had a clue, and neither of us really cared. We were just being kids and you enjoyed it just the same.
You introduced us to so many things throughout our time with you. You taught us girls how to put on make-up, how to decorate our dollhouses that you and grandpa made us, how good ice cream tastes with a spoonful of Ovaltine powder, you taught us how to take care of a dog with the Scrappy computer game, and you taught us that even though it may seem like the dolls in the room are staring at you at night, they’re really not. But most of all, you taught us that having a home isn’t a home without family to share it with. I can honestly tell you, Grandma, that you made our lives richer. You made our family times that much more enjoyable. You made life as a grandchild incredibly memorable. And we thank you for that. We love you for that.
Losing a loved one completely breaks your heart. And honestly, I’m not really sure if it ever goes back to the way it was before. Maybe that’s part of the beauty in life. We’re all tested and tried, loved and lost, and without the trials of life, there is no sense of growth. There is no sense of true understanding. Believe me when I tell you, my heart breaks at the earthly loss of you, Grandma. My heart and soul yearn for even one more night, eating ice cream before bedtime, but I know that life comes and it goes. And even though I may not be able to embrace you in a warm hug and although every part of my being wishes I would have sent this letter prior to Easter morning, I will still have my memories of you and I will look forward to telling my children one day about this wonderful woman that I call Grandma.
Although our birthday letters will no longer come in the mail and our holiday phone calls won’t be ringing, we know that you’ll be celebrating our birthdays and holidays with Grandpa, with Bill and with Trixie, Sam and Pooh. You were a treasure on this Earth and I know that you’re continuing to light up this world with your beautiful soul.
So give Grandpa a kiss from me, from all of us, and tell him that the family you both have created is bursting with life and love and each of us hold a piece of you. Enjoy this chapter in your journey. Wherever death takes us when we leave this tangible part of life, I hope it’s where you always imagined you’d be.
As you say…