September third will mark the six month anniversary of my grandmother’s death. I thought about that today, while I was putting my groceries away, and I wasn’t quite sure how to feel. It doesn’t SEEM like she’s been gone that long, which is a good thing.
The last time I saw her she made me a ham sandwich because I hadn’t eaten after work. I remember telling her that no matter how many times I made a ham sandwich, mine would never taste like hers. She said my Uncle Michael always said the same thing to her. Her explanation for it? Hers tasted better because they were made with love.
The other thing I remember about our last face to face meeting, besides the fact that I gave her an obnoxiously loud kiss and told her how much I loved her (which I am so very glad for) – was watching her move around her kitchen. She was a little hunched over and her movements weren’t that great. It bothered me at the time because my grandmother, though in her 80’s, never SEEMED old, but there she was, tottering around in her kitchen, her arthritic hand steadying her on her countertop. When she breathed, every once in a while she’d make a strange little noise. It’s very hard to describe, but it was like she was short of breath and almost sounded like a muted ‘heh’.
Honestly, I didn’t say anything about the breathing or her unsteadiness on her feet because of her monsterous pride. Insinuating she looked weak would have insulted her. This is the woman who SHOULD have had a cane, but refused to walk with one. Abso-fucking-lutely refused. Instead, she just walked as little as possible (which probably wasn’t healthy) to avoid her family’s nagging, so me mentioning her looking unwell? Yeaaaah. Wouldn’t have gone over big. Fart in a spacesuit bad, I’m sure.
It goes without saying I think about her every day, and I really wish she were still around. She used to remind me that she was “The best friend I ever had” because she was the only one in my life who defended me no matter what. I understood when she said it she was making sure I wouldn’t forget her, ever, or what she did for me. I never would have. She didn’t need to keep saying that to me. I hope I never gave her the impression that I wasn’t thankful for what she’d done. I hope I never gave her the impression that she wasn’t the brightest light in my dim little world, because she was. She was my best friend.
I really really miss her.