My grandma Olive died yesterday and I’m stuck at how it has brought up my maternal instincts. She had been deteriorating for several years to the point of being much like a baby. And I get teary when I think about how she left this world as helpless as a tiny child and I wish someone could have carried her into the next life.
I can’t help but think about how we as caregivers agonize over daycares and then school and eventually college and even nursing homes. We want the people we love so much to be safe and happy and well cared for when they are away from us and yet there are no scheduled tours of Heaven, there is no interview process or even brochure. It is the ultimate unknown and I have to have faith that with her last breath she was carried away by angels or some unearthly force that we don’t even begin to understand and in “coming home,” time vanished, questions were answered and all wrongs were made right. Maybe my faith is weak but when someone is suddenly gone… it gives me pause and my heart feels empty.
She was funny. She enjoyed a small glass of beer on a hot day, she kept a huge garden, she didn’t want for any more than she needed. She was a teacher and a great Scrabble player. She inspired me to keep a journal like she did. She had 7 children, 14 grandchildren and 16 great grandchildren. She was kind but tough and lived to be 99 years old.
My prayer is that she is whole again, warm and filled with a peacefulness that is beyond our understanding and capacity.