Maybe I'll just do little bits and add to it over time.
My gramma died on July 14th of this year. She was 93 and had been fading for quite a while. Her short term memory was pretty much shot to hell. I really started my grieving process almost exactly a year before she died. I can even tell you the moment...it was when she didn't know who Irene was. I expected her to not really know Rhys b/c her memory had been fading over the time from when he was born - but Irene was special with Gramma. Irene was the first great grandbaby. She was also named for Gramma's mother. We visited and were visited by Gramma several times and Gramma was at the hospital working on Irene's quilt when she was born. She always knew who Irene was. But on that night, she didn't have any recollection of Irene. I wasn't angry, just really sad. So - I'd been processing for a long time and really finding the joy in the moments when Gramma was herself - and there were many of those moments - even in the memory fades. I feel most especially happy and lucky that the last time I talked to Gramma, she was in a really good place and very lucid and happy and asking about me and mine. I could hear her special twinkle all the way through the phone line.
but what I want to share right now is about Gramma's Last Gift. The day Gramma died was the day after the kids and I got to Moni and Dad's house after our big journey to texas and back. The kids and I were able to stay with them and visit longer because the memorial was to be on Friday in San Diego. At the memorial (it was graveside), Mom gave Irene, and 2 of my cousins (the youngest girls of my generation) posies of sweet peas. Sweet peas are a special favorite of mine, mom's, and Gramma's. When I got married, Mom grew some sweet peas out of season so that I could have at least one in my wedding bouquet. So, when Mom gave the girls the posies, she was sharing the love of gardening and sweet peas and the beauty that can come of the garden. I could go on more about the memorial and I might at another time, but I'll keep on with what I'm trying (not very eloquently) to get out.
We left San Diego (via 90 minutes in Del Mar ) and got home Sunday. When we got home, I went out to our garden to water the plants (remember, I hadn't been home in 3 weeks). When I was watering, I noticed something on my incredibly dead sweet pea plant. The plant that had never given me any color flower but purple that I had babied for more than a year that was well and truly gone past the point of no return. On it was one pink sweet pea. I called to Irene and told her that Great Gram had sent us one last gift. It was like magic.
A week or so later, Mom had something similar and suddenly had some pink sweet peas bloom. I had one more pink blossom on my plant too.
Gramma's on my mind more today because Mom and I were canning.
I need to head to bed. It's okay if none of this made sense. I just wanted to write it down. I miss her.