Forgive me, I failed to post about a very interesting Monday that happened this week!
First, a little background info. I have lived in SoCal my entire life. My Dad’s family was in Michigan most of my life, but I was fortunate to forge close relationships with many of them as I grew. One such relationship was with my Grandma.
I lived for my Grandma – she tried to come out each summer of my life (at least, it seems that way) and I was always very close to her. She and I wrote letters to each other for years and years although admittedly, she was much more reliable at this than I! Back when I was a kid, before all the present security at airports, you could wait for a person right at the gate. Some of my fondest memories are of first seeing her face coming down the hall from the plane and the excitement I felt that SHE WAS HERE!!!! I loved her.
Except for one year – I really blew it. Grandma had come to my high school graduation and yes, I was thrilled that she would make the long flight to share this momentous occasion in my life. But I also was finding out how selfish I could be. You see, the day after graduation I had to go back to the high school to pick up something important. When there I ran into some friends and we thought it’d be fun to hold onto our high school fun by going to the movies together. I went to the pay phone (yes, this was pre-cell phones) and called home to ask my Grandma if that was cool (which is also funny since I was 18 1/2 years old!). She said that I could do whatever I wanted but she was disappointed that I wasn’t spending time with her.
Remember, prior to this I lived for my Grandma.
Anyway, being the good girl that I was, I went home. But let me tell you, I was not happy. I would say that I was even a little ticked! When I got home, something extraordinary happened – I witnessed, I believe for the first time, my Grandma crying. You have to understand, my Grandma always seemed so strong, self-efficient…..not really one to cry. So I was shocked to see her in such a state! She told me that she was very hurt that I would even ask to go with my friends when she was there for such a short time and that she always wouldn’t be there. She went on to say that she was getting older and this might be the last visit she would be able to make or that she might die (my Grandpa had passed away six months before). Please know that this was NOT a guilt thing…..these were her feelings.
Also know, at the time her actions (once I got thru the shock) ticked me off some more. I mean seriously, I just wanted to go to the movies for a couple of hours! I kept it inside, but it really pissed me off. I stayed, but my heart was not in it even though I had seen the real tears my Grandma had sent.
After she went home, I remember falling apart – missing her and realizing how true her words were. I sobbed uncontrollably in my room – so much so that my brother came in to see if I was okay. It was so hard for me to really acknowledge how crappy I had treated my Gradma whom I loved very much.
On a side note, my Grandma was able to visit more – she came for my wedding and I think at least one more time with my Cousin Lori….maybe another time. I also was able to visit her several times, including for her 80th Birthday – less than a year later she would pass away, in 1999.
So anyway, for some reason I woke up Monday morning missing her terribly. I am not sure if I had a dream (which I sometimes do, she is alive and I am so happy). I felt melancholy and thought how much I wished I could take back what I had done in my youth, but more importantly tell her that I really miss her. That she was right, I should have held onto our limited times together because they are so finite. That I was blessed to be so close to her despite the distance between us…..so much!
I went about my Monday morning, getting ready for work and such. Driving to work, I stopped for gas and, as I stepped out of the car, there was a bright and shiny new penny with the head up. I have no idea why (did Grandma mention it once?), but I totally felt like this was a sign from my Grandma, telling me she understood and she loved me. I know it sounds crazy, but the feeling was so strong. And I am not one to act all woo woo like so please understand that. So from that moment on, I felt so much better and smiled because my life was so filled with my Grandma and the blood that is flowing through my veins.
So, there is my interesting Monday.