When the ones we love leave; Grief and adaption.

July 20th, 2016

Well I suppose it was a rather pertinent time for me to begin writing a blog. This playful game of life has certainly been fond of throwing me curve balls, of late.
I’d have been writing more, but I’m living out of suitcases. Finally left Alabama, visiting my hometown for an unexpectedly long trip due to my husband graduating his course early. Hallelujah (to leaving Alabama… hometown thing is a bonus)!

Of course, first items on my agenda were visiting my 92 year old grandmother, my best friend and dearest earthly being. I told [husband] when I met him, “I’ll never leave Salt Lake; not until my Grams is gone.” Apparently I love him and I lied, but the sentiment remains. She’s the closest thing to a living angel there ever were. Going from weekly visits to annual has been hard. At 92, she’s been still kickin’ in the highest regard. Living alone, completely self-sufficient, still driving her own car…etc. When we got to town a week early, I decided we should stay with her the first few nights. I casually told my husband, “Don’t be surprised if she doesn’t wake up tomorrow. She might just die of joy for having us!” I was kidding. But I wasn’t.

On night two, we stayed up past midnight playing games. Still jet-lagged and groggy, we slept past eleven. Upon waking, the house was quiet and undisturbed. I expected her to be in her usual chair, doing her daily crossword and making jokes about how late we’d slept. But there was nothing. Hesitant, and with an eerily peaceful adrenaline rush, I asked [husband] to go down to the garage and see if her car were still there. It was, which meant she was still in bed. She’s normally up by 9, to watch “the black man” Wayne Brady on Let’s Make A Deal. I was concerned. So concerned, I almost asked [husband] to check on her room too, before I thought better of putting him in such a position. I hesitated and said a silent prayer briefly, then knocked. There was an audible throaty gasp and a brief pause, “Come in!” As I was entering, her hands first went to touch her head in [what seemed to be] shame. A lovely and prideful woman who has worn a wig for many years. Even with me, embarrassed to be seen without her cloak of comfort. “I can’t believe it’s ELEVEN! I’ve slept the day away!” She exclaimed. I was just relieved she was alive, she was concerned about missing out on time spent together.

In the week that followed, we spent at least a few hours of nearly each day with her, sharing meals, telling stories, playing games and laughing as we do. She’s grown even more feisty than I remember her, and I delight in it!

This morning, after sleeping in until eleven again, I see a missed call from my dad. And a text. Grams has been carted to the hospital. Not sure why. Headed there now.


That’s as far as I got while attempting to write this story in the moment. As always, left off with the intent to return and finish before publishing. But life happens.

…To be continued in the present day.




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