|my grandma with my brother and me|
That June she passed away.
For the last ten years (which is unbelievable) since she passed I have spent every Easter (and so many days in between) just feeling overcome with guilt and regret that I wasn't there to spend our last Easter with her. In the last year or two, and especially today, I realized that instead of feeling sad and full of regret, I should spend the day thinking the happiest, most wonderful things about my grandma... about all of the things that made her such an incredibly special woman (who also raised a pretty incredible daughter or four, if I might say so myself).
As I was just sitting on the couch, thinking about how much I miss her and how much I wish I could just see her, talk to her, get a hug from her one more time (wouldn't that be great with anyone we love so much that has passed?), I had another realization.
One of things I always think about when I think my grandma is the last note she ever sent me, that to this day makes me fall to pieces when I read it. She gave it to me for my 17th birthday, May 1, 2002 (well, shortly thereafter). In the most fragile writing I had ever seen from her she wished me a belated happy birthday and told me to "have a great senior year."
In telling me to have a great senior year she was speaking a million words she would never get to say to me, acknowledging a thousand conversations we would never get to have, and surrendering to all of the life events we had left to experience together.
|my grandma and my brother|
I miss her now as I do every day, and I will deeply miss her not being at my wedding. I will miss her showing up in what I know would be the most fashionably fantastic over-seventy-I'm-heading-to-church outfit. This woman knew how to dress-up and accessorize. On my wedding day I won't get to have that moment that I always thought was so awkward when I was kid but miss now, naturally... when she would walk in the door and see me she would hug me and then she would always also kiss me. I would always think she was going to kiss me on my cheek, but then she'd kiss me on my lips, and of course she always would have just put lipstick on (which then came off on my face/lips) and I was generally totally and completely mortified. It's funny the things you remember so vividly, isn't it?
"To a beautiful granddaughter,
We wish you a very belated congratulations on your engagement. We love you very much and have a wonderful wedding.
Grandpa and Grandma Lang"
(I wish :)
I love you. I miss you so (so) much and think of you everyday. I know you'll be there in my heart. I don't think these tears will ever go away when I think of you, but know they are not just sad tears, but also happy ones as I think of all the amazing things you left behind in this world to carry on.
And P.S., you would just love "my lady."