Last Thanksgiving, we hung out with grandma.
Today, we packed up the things in her room to be donated. Our grandma passed away this morning. It was so sudden. One week we were eating clams in black bean sauce, opening birthday presents, and painting our nails, and the next she’s on an oxygen tank. It has been a stressful, traumatizing, and incredibly emotional three days. I’ve gone from frustration to anger to sadness to desperation to numbness. Today, I lost my last remaining grandparent and one of the funniest, sauciest, and strongest women in my life.
One of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do was walk into her empty room and see her possessions piled on her bed, waiting to be thrown away. Kim, Tommy, Carlos, and I packed it all up and its sitting in our apartment right now. I have every intention of donating her things, but right now, I just want to hold onto them for a little while longer. I can’t believe she’s gone. Even though her health was waning, I never thought it would happen so fast, so soon. I just wish I could spend one more afternoon chatting with her and painting her nails. I’d give anything to hear her ask me where “Melogee” was (for some reason Mel’s name was the only one she said in English) or if I was working hard or tell me to be more frugal or laugh or smile. She was one of the best things in my life.
I miss her so much.
My sisters and I grew up on the Lower East Side, in a building right next to my grandparents. They helped raise Kim and I since my mom worked the night shift. I have so many memories in that apartment.
She was truly a remarkable woman. So today, instead of being sad like I was last year, I am thankful. I’m so grateful to have been her granddaughter; to have been able to hear her stories, wear her homemade sweaters, and being deeply loved by her.
Lastly, I’m thankful that they’re together again, after being apart for so long.
I started the day feeling pretty sad. I always feel sad when I see my grandma in the nursing home. Not because its not a great environment filled with helpful and compassionate staff – because it is – but because she has to be there and there’s not much I can do about that.
She is a champ, though.
The concept of Thanksgiving is a bit of a challenge for me. I feel overwhelmed when I try to be thankful for everything in my life all in one day. The effect is that I’m strangely apathetic. So, I try to focus on being thankful everyday. This helps.
Today as filled with the usual family stuff. Cute kids, copious amounts of food.
Is anyone else feeling like a weirdo on Thanksgiving?