It has been just over fourteen years since you’ve been gone. I think about you quite often; actually more so now than ever before. As I age I long to ask you questions, things I was too young to think about in the years that I had you. I am so grateful I had you around as a child, but I feel you’ve missed out on so much. I wish you would have met the love of my life. I just know he would have loved you, and you would have loved him. He’s sweet and funny, respectful and clean cut; a little like Grandpa in that way. I wish you could have laid your eyes on my sons! Oh Grandma, if there were ever two boys you would love as much as your own, I promise it would be my two. They are my work of art, my greatest accomplishment. I was eighteen when you died and you knew and liked me, but I don’t know if you could have guessed then how similar we are or would become anyway. I wonder if you ever stopped to watch me, your second grand daughter and maybe said to yourself, “Hey…I see something of myself in that girl.” I like to think that if you were here now, that you would.
There are the basic similarities. Our wider, mushroom kind of nose on a roundish face. The big, round, brown eyes. Our height is the same four feet and eleven inches, never quite getting to that five foot mark, both of us wider at the hip and fuller in the rear and thighs. I think if I wore my hair short, it might curl up a little like yours. We both value our marriage, and truly love our husbands. We are both mothers to two sons with close to the same age difference and we both chose traditional names for them. I know I feel the same way you did about having boys, thrilled to be the lady of the house and perfectly fine with muddy foot prints, dump trucks and sling shots even if that means we may miss out on Barbie dolls and hair bows. I hope that you’d be proud of the way that I parent. You never spanked my dad, (for fear you would never stop!) and I could never imagine spanking my boys either.
There are other similarities too. I love to bake, as you did. I love flowers, and wish I had the ability to grow them the way you did in your back yard in Detroit. I too prefer to wear dresses, though I can’t quite figure out how you manage to do it while chasing after small children. I like to write, just as you did. In your day, you had a paper and pencil. Later a typewriter and a little bottle of white out, carefully pecking out words and trying to keep spacing equal and neat. In this day, my day, I have a computer which corrects a mistake sometimes before I realize that I made one. I imagine that you’d be both awed and annoyed by my methods, probably preferring the old fashioned way. After all, you managed to trace your genealogy across an ocean without a computer or the world wide web to assist you. I can’t imagine how you’d feel about Google! We are sensitive but stubborn. We are kind and maybe a little too trusting. We both believe in God, though I cannot claim to be religious as you are.
Grandma, you came to me in a dream once and told me that you were ok. You were healthy and beautiful. You spoke with a loud clear voice so unlike the weak, MS ravaged voice I had always heard. It was so real and so vivid that I woke up sobbing. Though you’ve never come to me in a dream again, I believe you came to me in some quiet way when I was pregnant with Grant. From very early on I just knew he would come on your birthday, and he did! It makes me wonder if he will be the child of mine to receive your traits, my traits; our traits. I sure hope so. Much of the good in me came from you, and that is the stuff I hope carries on. I miss you Grandma and I love you too.
Until we meet again,