Friday, May 20, 2005

Granny

I had a couple of down days and couldn't decide what to write about. Insomnia? My daughter's rude behavior and how it is driving us all bonkers? Technical problems?
Nothing was gelling.

And then for some reason my dear-departed granny's image kept slipping into my head. I think of my granny around this time of year even more than I think of her normally (at least once a day on a normal basis). It's the primroses that are just starting to blossom and it isn't long after the date of her birth and death. I've always found it kind of cool to have a birth and death date close together, like God's plan worked out all neat and tidy--just like my gran.

Anyway, my granny...She's been dead for as long as I've been married, nearly a decade now. It still feels like yesterday, but it also feels like she never left. When she died there was this huge gulf in our family that is still there today.

My mom found out gran was dying when I was a week away from my wedding. Gran went into hospital when I was on my hen night and she never came out. I heard my mom crying herself to sleep at night, but I blocked the true reasoning behind those tears, thinking she was just worried about her mother being ill. At the time I didn't know it was cancer, nobody told me how ill she was because they didn't want to spoil my wedding day.

I lived in Canada at the time (again) and we'd flown back two weeks before (which BTW is the BEST way to organize a wedding). But I will never get over the guilt...not of not going to gran's funeral, which I'm sure is still a crime in my parents' eyes, but the guilt of not coming home, even though gran had begged me to when I talked to her on the phone at Christmas. She cried and asked me, "Please come back." And she never cried and never asked for anything in her whole life...except that we look after our mother. At the time I put it down to old person sentimentality, but I think she knew she didn't have long left to live.

She was my mom's biggest supporter and my brother's champion. She would look after us during school-holidays and after-school. We went blackberry picking and she would show us the places she worked 'in-service' as a young woman, and tell us tales of the war when she was a cook in the army, how she fell into quicksand on Southport beach and grandad pulled her out. She was great and I swear she's still with me everyday. Watching grandad's misdemeanors, haunting our least favorite ex-family member and seriously pissed not to be helping out her beloved daughter.

I don't know if people realize or remember how much I loved her. I hope they don't say "Well she didn't even go to the funeral." I'm not big on funerals and prefer paying my respects to the living and not being two-faced to the dead. We all have our own lives to live, if we're lucky we can carry those closest to us around in a corner of our heart. Maybe that's why I love romances--because I believe the power of love really does make a difference--after all I haven't beaten my child or dh this week even though I've felt a terrible need. :-)

We always say in this house 'kisses work better than hits' and I always try to love my kids the way my granny loved her child and grandchildren. Unconditionally.

2 comments:

  1. I am sure you gran is proud of how you have turned out. It is far more respectful to hold that memory every day and feel the presence of that good spirit than to spend one day at a service. Funerals are a token of respect for those gone, holding there memory IS respect born out of love.
    We have all lost people, when I’m gone I would rather they remembered me in love than went through the motions and then let the feelings passed into history without a thought.
    It sounds as though you will not forget her.
    If her character was so strong , do you reflect characters of those you know well in your writing

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  2. I hope I can put her in a story sometime. She really was funny. Weaned me on Sons and Daughters, Neighbours and demanded absolute respect for the monarchy.
    Interesting poeple are all about contrast and she had it in spades. Don't know what she's going to do to my grandad when he joins her. LOL, he's in trouble!!!

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