The Woman She Was

August 23, 2010
By Christina Lorey BRONZE, Arlington Heights, Illinois
Christina Lorey BRONZE, Arlington Heights, Illinois
1 article 0 photos 0 comments

To many people, she was a nurse
A hardworking laborer completing the night shift at a local hospital
Arriving at work long after most people were asleep
Kindheartedly devoting her evenings to benefit the public
Because that’s the woman she was: a devoted nurse.

The sun peeked its head out of the clouds, greeting a new day
Returning home to her family
Children and husband rolling out of bed after a restful sleep mandating breakfast be served
An exhausted cook serving the meals
Meeting her family’s needs with a smile on her face
Sending her kids off to school, her husband off to work
No time dispensed for her own needs—solely for others
Dusting, cleaning, laundry, cooking, gardening—all demanding completion throughout the day
For days and years, a long list of chores awaited completion
Growing older, frailer, yet ever will-powered, tasks were finished
Because that’s the woman she was: a devoted mother and wife.

Kids graduating college, retirement drawing near
Routine ever existent and ever draining
Selfless attitude leaving her motivated
Family still remaining a priority
Grandchildren flock to her house, longing to spend time with Grandma
Cooking with Grandma, taking knitting lessons from Grandma, simply sitting with Grandma—all time

spent with her was cherished
Years passed, some grandkids grew older, others still arriving
She loved them all, expanding her schedule to make more and more time for them
Because that’s the woman she was: a devoted grandmother.

Although aging, she was still young at heart—not set out on retirement quite yet
Main focus was helping others, her needs secondary
Yet her needs were demanding attention
Type 1 diabetes had been eating away at her
Routine tasks drew on, causing physical strife and disdain
She uncharacteristically grew fatigued around family, her top priority
Health slowly drawing out of control, she continued to dismiss her own needs
Maintaining a job, cooking, cleaning, and devoting time to grandchildren
Her clock was running out, time was expiring
Her health sadly deteriorating
Finally surrendering to a hospital bed, she gave up the fight to live
I was barely a year old…never acquainted with her
Yet I felt as if I knew her, as her spirit lived on through stories and family
Through qualities of strength, selflessness, and compassion
She was a hero
She was a fighter
She was a saint
She is my grandmother.

The author's comments:
My grandmother passed away when I was only one year old. I regret never truly being able to know her, aside from stories my parents and relatives have told. After visiting my grandma's brother (who displayed similar mannerisms to his sister), I was inspired to write about my grandma.

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This article has 8 comments.

on Jan. 3 2011 at 4:28 pm
Impressive use of the varied elements of the craft of writing; effectively aids the reader's ability to visualize this beloved, selfless woman.  You must be proud to call her your own..."grandma."

ms bix said...
on Nov. 22 2010 at 8:05 pm

An inspiring tribute, she was a kind and wonderful lady. She would be proud of the young woman you've become....


Hawkeye said...
on Oct. 26 2010 at 5:18 pm
Wow. An incredibly moving poem that paints a loving portrait. I especially liked the turn in the final line from past to present tense, emphasizing her continual presence. Well done.

Char said...
on Sep. 20 2010 at 8:05 am

You captured just how special a grandmother is in one's life.  You honored her life with your heart-felt poem.  What a beautiful tribute.


112233 said...
on Sep. 17 2010 at 5:51 pm
What a gift!  This made me cry.

aunt c l said...
on Sep. 16 2010 at 7:30 pm
Beautifully written; a touching tribute to your grandmother 

Winkel said...
on Sep. 13 2010 at 10:44 pm
A candid, heartfelt glimpse of a very special grandmother.  Emotionally is most all high quality poetry.  Impressive!

cutty51 said...
on Sep. 13 2010 at 7:02 am
Very moving.  Quite a tribute by a compassionate granddaughter to a person that undoubtedly left an indelible mark on the lives she touched...and continues to.


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