Saturday, October 12, 2013

I can see you star shining down on me

I miss my grandmother every day. Seven years ago today, she earned her wings and left this world behind to join Big Nick and the gang for the perpetual happy hour in the sky. She was beautiful, resilient, funny, amazing, strong supportive, unconditionally loving, amazing soup maker, a true friend, and a role model. Even though the void she left 7 years ago never can be filled, I feel like I am still learning from her, especially in the last 2 and a half years. How much I wish I could have had the understanding of what she dealt with fighting cancer (not breast cancer, but that doesn’t matter) back then. I would love to tell her I really know what it felt like and have had her with me as I walk through my journey. I could have asked her more questions and I would be have been a better friend and support to her… But then again, I suspect that’s not what she wanted. When it came to her suffering, she was so private. And I am of course aware that she would never have wanted to see me go through cancer. I imagine that would be torturous as a grandparent. But I suspect we would have chuckled our way through it anyway. I always think of her saying to me “what else can you do but laugh?” Knowing her, I would guess she have preferred for me to just be a granddaughter, not a sister survivor. I think I did a pretty decent job of that. We both looked forward to our daily chats during my evening commute. It was a highlight of both of our days. I’d tell her about work, and she would tell me about the old bitties in her building. I knew her time was growing short when she didn’t have the energy to talk much anymore. That realization was one of the saddest days of my life. I knew then that my angel on earth was heaven bound. I was selfishly sad for me. I was losing my Gram who I loved so dearly. Who right until the last week of her life was a part of my daily world, even though I lived an hour and a half away. I am glad that I took the time in her remaining years to invest so much in our relationship. It is a blessing that I don’t feel like I wasted a minute. And when that last week came, I was with her. Not in her last moments, but in her last days, and she knew how much I loved her. I wonder if she knows how much I miss her. I tell her all the time. I hope she hears me. In the meantime, I remember her and smile. The costumes, the photo albums, the pasta Sundays, the laughs, the sewing, the road trips, laughing on our DC trip in the cab ride back to the hotel at Chris, the colored easter eggs, her sitting on the couch every Christmas morning waiting for us to get up, the old Italian music, dancing around being silly, visits with her and Aunt Jo and Nanny Grace, The old apartment in Secaucus, the lego building, “eye in the sky mildred”, the doot-dah-dos with her and Aunt Betty, the way she said certain words (bottle, seattle and Tylenol), the card that simply said “i’m proud of you kid” when I got my master’s degree, shopping for “tops”, the stories, all of it. I can still hear her laugh. So many amazing memories. I am blessed to have had a best friend like her. Just wanted to share a few lyrics that make me smile and think of her from “everywhere I go”… There are times when I look above and beyond There are times when I feel your love around me, baby I'll never forget, ma baby… Always been a true angel to me now above I can't wait for you to wrap your wings around me, baby Wrap them around me, baby… Everywhere I go, every smile I see I know you are there, smilin' back at me Dancin' in moonlight I know you are free 'Cuz I can see your star shinin' down on me…