Saturday, February 16, 2008

My Grandma

My Grandma is dying. She had a massive stroke a few weeks ago and has been in decline since then. She is on morphine for the pain, and the feeding tube was removed yesterday. I'm welling up just writing these words.

She turned 93 last month, so I console myself with the fact that she has had a long life. Filled with brothers, sisters, aunts, uncles, loving husband, children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. She has seen it all. But I will miss her.

I try to trick myself into thinking that in most ways she is already gone because she has not really been conscious since her stroke 3 weeks ago. I went to see her in the hospital and it was sad, scary and grim. I knew when I looked into her face that what I saw was a person who was dying, barely the grandma that I use to cuddle in bed with when I was small.

I know I am lucky. I had a grandma for 43 years which is a long, long time. I always like to think that the grandchild role is a special one. I was the first grandaughter.

My Mother, who is insane, is making this all about her which is creating an unwelcomed distraction. I am dreading having to deal with her over the next few weeks.

I regret not being able to give my grandma another great grandchild. I also feel guilty knowing that the genetic connection ends with me. I will not be passing along the long line that my grandma represented.

The picture up above was taken when my grandmother was thirteen, full of promise and life. I like this image, it is one of hope and optimism.

The day before her stroke she went to the beauty parlor (for the last time). It was a great pleasure that she never gave up on. Her white hair was cut and fluffed and her nails freshly manicured in pearlized baby pink.

This picture was taken infront of her apartment building, the building she lived in until the day she went to the hospital 3 weeks ago. She moved in when the building opened in 1942.

It gives me great comfort to know that she still cared to look her best. At 93 she still managed to put on her lipstick and draw on her eyebrows before she went out in public.

This is the grandma I will always remember.