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Words of Wisdom
Even now the words that my grandfather told me still ring fresh in my mind as if he had said them to me yesterday. He told me that “It’s ok to cry, and missing her is ok, and her dying was all for the better.”
I lived in a nice big house in Gales Ferry, Ct. I lived with my grandfather, who I called Poppa and my grandmother who I called Mimi. Every morning I would wake up; get dressed, go down stairs, to get greeted by my grandfather drinking his coffee and my grandmother putting on her makeup for work. And with a kiss and a hug I would be outside at the tip of the driveway waiting for the bus.
After a long day at school being greeted by my grandfather as soon as I came home was the best thing in the world. We would go inside, start my homework, then start dinner, and wait for my grandmother to come home from work. Whenever we would sit down at the dinner table the conversations were mainly about what had gone on at the nursing home. My grandmother worked as the director of nursing, so she always used big words that I’d never heard before, but they were still interesting because even though I didn’t understand what she was saying my grandfather could understand the words just fine. It was like they were speaking whole other language.
One night, on the way to a restaurant, I remember my grandmother saying that her side hurt every time that we turned a corner. I didn’t realize it then but looking back on it now, I was there when everything started to happen. My grandmother had developed cancer in her kidney. And it was the just the beginning. Things started to escalate from an ‘ouch” because we turned a corner to long hospital visits.
After a while, things started to change. My grandmother started walking slower, and she wasn’t talking as well as she was before. She started to slur her words. We installed wheelchairs that would move up and down the stairs since she wasn’t able to climb them on her own anymore. We would go to the hospital every other week. Then she started staying for days at a time.
A few weeks later I sleeping like a baby in my bed when my grandfather woke me up. I thought to myself that I didn’t get much sleep for school, but that wasn’t the case at all. There was something wrong with my grandmother. I went into the closet, grabbed an outfit for the next day, all my school stuff, and headed down the stairs outside to meet up with my mom who woke up at the early time of 2am to come get me. There were a whole bunch of fire trucks an ambulances pulling up. To this day I still don’t know what happened to my grandmother that scary night.
A few weeks had gone by an I tried to put everything out of my mind an just have a good time. It was a huge snow storm; and everybody else in my family was at the hospital. My mom came in and told me that she had to talk to me at home. I walked outside across the street to my grandfather’s house. My uncle was shoveling snow in the driveway, and it seemed like something was wrong. I had a feeling. Have you ever walked into a room and then instantly tell that something was wrong? Well that’s exactly what I felt. I walked into the house, took my shoes, off, and sat down on the couch. Then my mom told me that Mimi died her voices started to lower as she began to cry. The tears slowly filled her big green eyes. I didn’t do anything for a while; my heart just stopped.
Then the tears came. I cried like I never cried before. The thought of my grandmother not being here with me really scared me. She was my mom, my best friend, my teacher, everything. “She’s gone” were the only words that ran through my mind.
At the funeral the only words that I heard were from my grandfather. We walked into a side room in the funeral home. My grandpa could see that I was in pain and that the passing had really gotten to me. He grabbed both of my hands. Whenever he grabbed my hands I felt safe because his hands were so much bigger then mine .When ever he held them I felt like nothing could happen to me and that he was like my hero who would save me from all the villains that would try an hurt me. And that’s when he told me that “It’s ok to cry, and that missing her is ok. Maybe her dying is all for the better.” He continued “She wouldn’t have been happy here with us, and she still would have been suffering.”
It took me two long years to finally accept the fact that my grandmother is gone. Family get togethers aren’t the same, and birthdays are the worst days. Nothing will ever be the same. Every year on the day that she died, my family and I go to my grandma’s grave to visit her.
I always keep in mind what my grandfather told me and I believe that what he said helped me deal with a lot of passings in my family. Now when someone dies I don’t think of it as a death, I think of it as God just needing another angel in heaven.