Six months ago, I lost my Grandpa. Today, Grandma joined him.
Grandpa's loss was so unexpected and was totally a shock. We've been expecting and anticipating Grandma's death for a year or more, so all of us are experiencing some relief with our grief.
Where Grandpa was easy to love and was always ready with a hug, Grandma was not. She kept everyone--everyone except him--at arm's length. And that made it hard for all of us who loved her to show her we loved her and it made all of us try so hard to show her that we did love her, because no matter what we did, it never felt like it was enough. I never felt like she accepted our love. Maybe she didn't know how to allow herself to be loved--unconditionally.
Grandma was never healthy. Never. She had standing appointments at the Dr's office. Every Friday, we sat at the Dr's office. I've never been convinced that she was really ill... But I know at times, she truly was ill. She was very ill when she delivered Aunt Dorothy. I know she was ill at various times when Mom and Sandy were growing up. And yet. it was also a means of getting attention. And, as an adult, I wondered if being sick was the only way that the girl she once was could get attention from a very busy single mother.
My Grandma gave me many things. She taught me to embroider. She helped me with my 4-H sewing projects. We took art classes together. We also did ceramics together. She babysat me when Mom worked and I was too young to stay at home alone. I got my love of Chickens from her. I got my enjoyment of "farm wife" stuff from her. I have many fond memories of days and times with my Grandma. They weren't anything special, just everyday life. And, I will treasure my memories.
The woman she was died at least a year ago, and that small part that didn't die then, died with Grandpa. In my mind, Grandpa had finally run out of patience, waiting for her to come on her own and came to get her today. I imagine he told her that it was time to go and to just come on. And she did--as always, she went with him. She wouldn't go for anyone else, and she wouldn't go on alone, so she waited for him and then, she simply left.