September 30, 1922 - July 18, 2012
Many of you may remember that my Grandma passed away in July. She was a very special woman in my life and I sure do miss her. She lived with us for the last few years of her life, so I do have some solace knowing I helped to make her end days more enjoyable.
Just before Memorial Day, Grandma ended up with a bad case of bronchitis, putting her in the nursing home to recuperate. My son was married on June 30th, and grandma was there, looking pretty good I might add. She had a wonderful time. She must have given up after that wedding, because every time I went to see her after that she seemed more and more withdrawn. On July 16th, the nursing home called me indicating I should come down to be with her right away. They told me her body was shutting down and it wouldn't be much longer. I told my friends that I thought she would leave us on July 18th, her anniversary.
I received a call early on the morning of July 18th, informing me Grandma had just passed. Grandpa had come to take her home and she is now reunited with her parents, husband, daughter (my mom), and granddaughter (my sister). Quite a reunion it must have been!
On my birthday I was missing her desperately. So I decided to sit down and write a little flash story about how I felt about my Grandma right then and there. I want to share with you what I wrote:
Loneliness and sorrow follow me today, as I begin my forty-fourth year in this world. Looking back on past birthdays, a family member was taken from me almost every ten years. As survivors Grandma and I developed a special bond. Roles became reversed. She cared for me as a young child and I cared for her as an aging adult.
For forty-three birthdays I heard Grandma say, “Happy Birthday Jo-Jo.” But not today.
Less than three weeks ago I told her, “I love you Grandma.”
“I love you too, Jo-Jo,” was her final response to me. We can’t choose our final words to our loved ones, but I wouldn’t trade these for a million bucks.
Grandma was a connection to my childhood, the last physical link to my heritage, and now she is gone. She may be gone from this earth, but will always remain in my heart.