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September 7, 2007 / allyo

Twelve months

In my mind’s eye I see her, three decades younger, wearing her linen pants and pale pink sweater. She pulls out her compact, freshens her lipstick, and waits for him to arrive.

This improbable image, set place in a heaven that I don’t really believe in, has been fixed in my mind since she died a year ago this coming Monday. My grandma, waiting for her true love, my beloved grandfather who left us more than 20 years ago. I’ve never really imagined their reunion, just these few moments of anticipation. The rest, it’s between them.

My Aunt K is a firm believer in looking on the bright side of life and in her sympathy card she wrote in her familiar all-caps printing something to the effect of, “Your grandma loved you-you know that. Remember the good times and let the rest go.” Only that last part was triple underlined, her typical method of emphasis usually reserved for the “we love yous” or “we’re proud of yous” on cards marking happier occasions – birthdays, weddings, graduations.

I have done my best to take that advice and while I can say that the anger and sense of betrayal has faded, it has been a mere function of time and energy directed elsewhere. I haven’t experienced a true moment or even a series of moments of “letting go.” I probably never will and I’m ok with that. Maturity or resignation, sometimes the two are so intertwined that it’s not worth picking them apart when the end result is the same.

All that really matters is, I miss her. I miss her in the same way that I breathe. Unconsciously, sometimes made more ragged and difficult, whether by asthma or a sharp, unwanted reminder of what I’ve lost. I’ll be sitting in the car as we drive to our weekly errands and suddenly there are tears in my eyes and I want to go home and hide under the covers. I don’t, of course. I push on in what could be defined as a tribute to her spirit. She never let anything – poverty, abuse, grief – stop her from moving forward, ever-relentlessly, towards the far away mark she had set for herself. And so I try to live up to her example and do the same.


Leave a Comment
  1. dawn / Sep 7 2007 6:23 pm

    Man, you set a great example. This was a beautiful, thoughtful entry, allyo. Thanks.

  2. Austina / Sep 10 2007 4:27 am

    I send a hug to you to use in any way that you need. I am also blessed that you are my friend.

  3. thordora / Sep 12 2007 9:05 pm

    It’s hard to let it go. It is. Time helps.

    I’m sorry.

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