The Dearest One

July 11, 2012
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Here I am, stronger from a continuation of prayer and finally I can talk without crying although I’m still hurting. I sat there and told my grandmother about my life and how I am now attending college. Sitting by her flower-covered grave talking now is easy and soothing, almost like planting flowers. Years ago, I would not have been able to see someone else’s granny without crying.

Every single day I would go to my granny’s house. As I entered the gates, the planted abundance of yellow tulips and red roses to my right would always turn my head in their direction. Even while I climbed the red brick stairs to enter the big baby blue house, I would still be staring at them. Toys would be everywhere in our play room, but they got no attention from me. My granny was my priceless toy whom I respected and loved dearly.

“Granny, your baby is here!” I would yell out while nearly running to her room. Through her voice I could tell she had a smile on her face as she almost cheered, “I’ve been waiting for you!” I ran into her outstretched arms and we bear hugged each other as we giggled and smiled like teenagers on a fun night out. Her thick hug-giving arms and her forever-stretching smile made me feel as if the entire world was at peace with little to no worries. She was a person that loved God and she was strong physically, mentally, and emotionally. Her respectful, sincere, sweet, and positive presence was heartwarming and forever wanted.

Twice a month the whole family would stay within her cozy walls that were filled with laughter and love. We would all play Twister or other games while she watched and lit up the room only by smiling. When everyone would notice that her smile wasn’t so big and bright as before, we would put her in bed and we would all go to sleep. After everyone had dozed off my tiny footsteps would tiptoe across the floorboards as I went and slept the rest of the night away with my granny.

Each morning when we got up, she would tell me to imitate her words, she called those words “prayers.” After that daily ritual was completed we would talk about what to do and what not to do. When it was up to my grandmother, which was always, I never got a punishment. Although I still was an ordinary child that did what children do, my mom never whipped me because of my granny. I was thankful for having my granny because somehow I was still raised right. She was my everything.

As time went by, I started to realize she looked fatigued. Weeks later, she went to the doctor a number of times. I found out she was sick and not just with some common fever, or some stomachache, but really sick. The fact that the grown-ups tried to keep it a secret from me made me feel like I had eaten five tons of cake. I felt ill, gloomy, horrendous, horrified and worried. The doctor diagnosed the illness as cancer. I was so young I didn’t know what the flu was. Who expected me to know about this cancer thing! What I did know was that her death was inevitable and the pain struck me to my core. With her treatments the illness was eradicated for a while but then it attacked her again. Although she was still as gorgeous as before, I never understood why her head got bald at times.

Her last trip to the doctor was life-changing. I was playing teacher with my cousins until I heard this thundering cry. My cousins and I dropped our school supplies and ran to see what had gone wrong. We flew across the forty or less inches to my mom’s master bedroom like there was a lion behind us. We opened the door to find endless tears running full speed down her cheeks. Suddenly it felt as if someone had built a brick house on my chest. It was heart-rending; I was suffering emotionally because I knew my grandmother had died.

The day of the funeral I saw all the sad faces and low shoulders. As her body laid there motionless and breathless, I wanted this to be a nightmare. Friends came over to console my shattered heart, body, mind, and soul. I could only sit there with a blank stare and cry while I repeated to myself the prayer she taught me hoping it would bring her back. As memories flashed through my head, I smelled her favorite warm vanilla fragrance and I reminisced about the times that we shared.

For days that seemed like centuries I didn’t eat. My skin had gotten paler and duller and it made my mom even more sorrowful. I didn’t want to add to the pain of her already throbbing heart—but I couldn’t help it. I had lost my best friend; someone had buried my heart. Years have passed and I have learned to accept the fact that my grandmother is gone and never, ever coming back.

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