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Posts Tagged ‘Grandma’

One Year

It’s been one year. One year since my grandma died. I sill miss her, will always have those moments of thinking of her remembering her.  Recently, I’ve been reminded of what I went through as I watch a friend go through something similar.

Today, though I’m dealing with a diagnosis of Mononucleosis (this past Wednesday), and am in a lot of discomfort, I am also taking time to remember.

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Some days I just need to stop and take a deep breath. The last few days have been like that for me.  Monday I received information related to some paperwork that was important to me to complete.  The thing was, prior to Monday, the deadline wasn’t publically known because the information was not relayed on time for us (excuse the vagueness, but it’s necessary).  And the deadline was Monday.

I ended up spending the entire evening on Monday working (and stressing out) to get the paperwork done and had to send it in late and apologize for a delay that wasn’t my fault.  In the end I had a door nudge open this week as a result. I’m not going to go into detail now but what stress and lack of sleep!  Three hours of sleep before clinical is not enough! But, I think in the long run it will be worth it and I’ll end up where I want to be, partly due to this week.

But later this week it’s been more difficult as I’ve had to watch a close friend grieve her mother’s passing.  It reminds me of what I went through this time last year when my grandma passed away, also of a heart attack.  What I felt is only a fraction of the intensity she’s feeling, I know that, but it’s heart wrenching and I know there’s nothing I can do but listen, keep in touch and step forward and support her as much as I can. All I can do is walk with her through the pain and try to support her.  It just reminds me of how fleeting life really is.  My advice to anyone reading this is go call your mom. Give her a hug. Let her know how much she is loved. Heck, do that with your whole family.

Then, to add icing to the cake on this very weird week. The distraction called. Just to say hi. It shocked me, because I don’t expect a call anymore and it was both strange and normal at the same time.  He’s still stressed, with a heaviness in his voice that isn’t usually there and it sounds like things aren’t much better in his world.  I hope that, for his sake, things get better. I still stand on the opinion that ‘he’s just not that into me’ and I realize I need to meet new people. It’s hard to meet potential men when you’re in a program that’s 90% female and it consumes most of your life.  I’ve said it before (not on this blog I don’t think): I need a personal marketing manager. Heh.

What a week.  I’m very thankful it’s the weekend and I’m THRILLED that Sunday’s coming so I can have a “no alarm at home in the PJs” morning. It may make the 4am wake up on Monday more difficult but catching up on the lost sleep from this week will be needed. Wow! It’s been intense.

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Today I found them. The Rose Coloured Glasses. When I wrote my post about my grandma, the day she died, I commented:

She was the type of woman who told it like it is, but everything was always seen through rose coloured glasses — with a pragmatic edge that made us all love her even more.

Today, I went with my parents, cousin and aunt and uncle and we worked on cleaning out my grandma’s place.  While we were there I found a pair of my grandma’s sun glasses. With rose coloured lenses.  That meant a lot.  I collected a few things, and my mom has a few other things for me at their place.   My grandma was a woman of sentiment and caring: She kept an ornament I made when I was a child.

I’m glad I was able to do it, help out, it was tough on my mom, and I didn’t help that much. I was cleaning out a closet of Christmas ornaments. I found something rather important that my family had been looking for. But it wasn’t something that was easy to find. It had me shocked. It shocked my mom. It was a tough tough day.  But I’m glad I could support them. It had to be found.  So this evening I’m relaxing.

I’m also looking at my things, and I’ve been in a purging phase anyhow, and now I want to purge more. Spending time cleaning my grandma’s place makes me realize that I don’t want people do have to do that for me.  It may be a morbid or a dramatic thing to consider, but, really, if I can live my life in such a way not to be cluttered with stuff, that is perhaps a better way to live.  I don’t want people who are grieving for me, my children perhaps their children having to go through things sorting out what is what and what to keep what to toss.  I would like people to simply be able to find what they want to keep — what’s important to them, and the rest sent to charity.

So I purge. I’ve been going through things, have been for the last several weeks. Now I’m more motivated to purge. Get rid of those things I don’t love, don’t cherish, those things I wouldn’t want someone to have to sort through.  It’s a step I need to do as I continue on this journey towards living life well, towards wholeness and health. Because I want to be happy, strong, and well enough to live my life looking through rose coloured glasses but with my grandma’s pragmatic edge.

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Tonight I had a good friend over to watch th hockey game. Awesome job Canucks! I was most impressed. The boys were fantastic.  Then I took a moment to upload a photo to my grandma’s carrot cake page. I made the cake for Easter last week.  It was a hit for me and my family.

Short post for this evening. It’s late, I’m tired, and ready to sleep.

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Easter

In many ways, this Easter was a beginning: the first family holiday where my grandma wasn’t there. Saturday night, I spent the evening baking and remembering my grandma.  Easter was a day spent with family and friends. My friends Mel and Cameron came with me, and we went to my family’s cabin and spent the day with my family, and family friends. It was pretty special to watch Cameron hang out with my brother. You could see Cameron really looking up to him, and I think my brother enjoyed it too.  Watching them run and jump on the beach, play with the tiny crabs, and run off steam was really cute. Poor Cameron really needed to run off steam after being stuck in my car in the border line up for about an hour (he was impressively patient!).

Unfortunately, the poor kid got sick. Literally. Hopefully, in spite of that, he enjoyed some parts of the day and at some point will enjoy going back to the cabin – without the sick part!

For me, it was a nice and special day. It was time spent with people who are important to me. It was time that I cherished even more because of what we’ve lost. I will resurface, and I will be back to my usual self. But not yet. I need this time of cocooning. Time spent individually with different friends, small groups, things where I don’t have to commit ahead of time.

So today, my last day off, I’m going to spend it spring cleaning and relaxing and recharging before I face the reality of work and life.

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I’m doing better; Feeling like myself, but feeling a bit fragile.  It’s not that I care about situations and the like, but I know that I can’t take anything more. So that means I am paying careful attention to what I do, where I go etc. Because I don’t want to put myself in an unsafe situation. I’m not talking about personal safety. I’m not a hermit and inappropriately afraid. I’m referring to situations of crap, hell, that I’ve been dealing with. I’m at a point where I don’t care. It’s not worth my time.  I’ve learned that the lost friend isn’t lost — I never had the friendship I thought. What is lost is my friendship. That friend can no longer count on my good will. I don’t hate, I don’t wish any bad: I just don’t care, don’t respect. I’ve lost nothing: I’ve gained truth. The lost friend, has lost greatly and doesn’t know it.

But whatever, after the crap I’ve gone through, issues that I need to post about eventually that I’m dealing with, and my grandma’s death, I am fragile. I badly need something, anything, good to happen. So I’m carefully deciding if I’m ready to go dancing. Right now I’m not. Right now I need to be in emotionally safe situations: time spent with real friends, new friends, running, caring for my health.  So last night I skipped a blues party to go out for drinks with friends.  It was great. I enjoyed it, got to know a friend of a friend a bit better (we’ve met a couple of times before).  Today I ran with my running group, had coffee and then ended up at a spontaneous lunch at a friend’s house. I wished I could stay longer – but I had a great time and I hope for more times like this with genuine good, solid, normal, interesting and smart people. But I was so tired after little sleep, running early, and going all day. So, I came home and passed out for a few hours on my couch.

Tonight I baked. I made my grandma’s carrot cake.  I’ll take photos once it’s finally ready — including the Easter Jelly Beans. I want to use to decorate the cake and add it to the carrot cake recipe page.   I also made some banana bread. It’s therapeutic to bake, and I’m trying to be productive to make things that I can freeze in preparation for the future.

And now, for the rest of the evening — what’s left of it — I’m going to get back to my spring cleaning. It’s also therapeutic to do spring cleaning. It feels like it’s something I can control. That’s good. Accomplishing something within my control. What a relief!

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Goodbye…

Today was my grandma’s memorial, celebration of life, service.  It was beautiful. First, the pastor spoke, followed by my uncle, who gave the Eulogy, two of my cousin’s kids spoke of their memories then, my brother and three cousins all spoke on behalf of each family.  We are all blessed to have known, loved, and been loved by such an amazing woman. We all have fantastic memories of my grandma: her humour, caring, love, many many meals. Family dinners. The love and support she gave each of us will impact all of us for the rest of our lives. Indeed the pastor was right, we are surrounded by love and that is the legacy that grandma leaves. She truly was the matriarch of a family, the rock and the cornerstone.  She has left many lessons of love, patience, kindness and she is giving me pause as I consider my priorities and what impact I want to leave when I reach such a wise age.

One of my cousins read a poem. It’s a published poem, written by Linda Ellis. Full credit belongs to her, I take none. But I do want to share it because it makes me stop and think.  How do I live my dash? When people are remembering me, what will they remember of my dash?  Ms. Ellis, I’d like to say thank you for this poem. My family thanks you for this poem. It was read today at the memorial of a woman to truly lived her dash well. She is an example to us all.

The Dash

copyright 1996 Linda Ellis


I read of a man who stood to speak
at the funeral of a friend.
He referred to the dates on her tombstone
from the beginning…to the end.

He noted that first came the date of her birth
and spoke of the following date with tears,
but he said what mattered most of all
was the dash between those years.

For that dash represents all the time
that she spent alive on earth…
and now only those who loved her
know what that little line is worth.

For it matters not, how much we own;
the cars….the house…the cash.
What matters is how we live and love
and how we spend our dash.

So think about this long and hard…
are there things you’d like to change?
For you never know how much time is left
that can still be rearranged.

If we could just slow down enough
to consider what’s true and real,
and always try to understand
the way other people feel.

And be less quick to anger,
and show appreciation more
and love the people in our lives
like we’ve never loved before.

If we treat each other with respect,
and more often wear a smile…
remembering that this special dash
might only last a little while.

So, when your eulogy is being read
with your life’s actions to rehash…
would you be proud of the things they
say about how you spend your dash?

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