December 28th, 1941 my grandmother was born. She never did anything in her life to make her famous or to win any major awards, but she really was great, amazing actually. I was blessed to have had her raise me and teach me the morals she held dear. It is because of her that I am the mother I am today. It's her that made me love my strays and speak my mind. I could never be half the woman she was, but even if I am a quarter as good then I'm doing pretty well.
My grandparents married young and had my mother in 1961. They worked hard and raised their three children. I assume they thought they would be grandparents one day that would love on their grandchildren and then send them home. Little did they know they'd raise not only me, but also their great granddaughter. Their doors were always open to us and our friends. The kitchen was always stocked with food and treats and as a teen all my friends would come to my house because of that. My gram was always honest about how she felt about people. She was never two faced or gossipy. If she had something to say she said it. I admired her for that even if at the time I didn't appreciate that quality the way I should have. I hated when she she said things to my friends that they or myself didn't agree with. I remember saying if my gram calls you an a*$hole well, you're probably being an a&*hole.
90% of the time she was right about people especially boyfriends. Of course I was a stubborn teen and didn't listen. She had no idea what she was talking about after all. Yet every time my heart was broken she was there to smooth back my hair and tell me it was his loss. Sometimes I long for her to be here still so she could do that now! She gave me a solid faith in God though and I turn to Him now, but still a hug from gram was always a bonus.
My gram always struggled with illness. Weight, diabetes, and effects from that. She was sick a lot and spent time on and off in hospitals. Still she was strong. Her mind always stayed sharp and she didn't let her illnesses hold her back. We knew one day on of her illness would take her. Then things started to go south. The doctor said her kidneys were failing. My grandfather had just retired and was prepared to take care of her as she did dialysis. He always had taken care of her after all. Then it happened he was diagnosed with leukemia. It was an aggressive form and we knew he would die. God knew he needed her now and it was her turn to take care of him. She got better enough they could hold off dialysis. She spent the last year with grandpa caring for him the best she could. I have never saw a love like they had before or since.
After he died she became really sick really fast. I remember being so mad at my husband and saying I wish he'd go away and my gram said don't ever wish that you'll miss him more than you'll ever know. In the end I helped take care of her and she always apologized. I told her I was paying back her taking care of me. Without her God only knows what would have ended up of me. I know I wouldn't be where I am in life now. Gram passed away August of 2011 and still to this day I forget and go to pick up the phone to call her. I've never made it out to her grave as it hurts so bad. I'm happy to hold onto the memories of her still alive and the lessons she taught me. The ones I pass onto my children.
I'll see you later gram, but until then Happy birthday.