I just found out my grandmother died. She died Wednesday apparently. My Dad decided to wait until today to tell me and only because I called him. I could go into that, but I won't. Too much ground there. Besides...I am sad. No reason to use the occasion to bring up our earthly problems at a time when we should be remembering those that came before. And I remember quite a lot about this women.
She was born in 1921. Prior to the WWII, she and my grandfather were married before the war and when he returned, they eventually went on to have three children, one of which was my father. Southern, she was born and raised. She was a very southern lady. Pretty and delicate, and well educated it always seemed to me, much of which was self taught. My grandmother loved to read, and not just any old book. She read histories. It was probably her who installed in me such love over my lifetime.
She and my grandfather loved to travel as well. I still remember when they went to China in the 70's and how neat it was when she returned with all the goodies. I recall the two asked to take me to Newfoundland when I was young. I chose not to go for whatever reason, at this great date I know not why. Probably didn't want to spend a week with the Grand-P's. I regret it now as I have for many a year.
Ellen, as she was known to her friends and husband, loved to dance. I remember that. And she loved to play bridge. This too I recall. She painted well, and I recall a time when she tried to teach me. Sadly it did not take. But it did, perhaps, when she gave me a typewriter one day to keep me occupied. One of those old suckers, the raised keys and no erase ribbon. It was then I started to write anything.
More than anything else, however, I will never forget what she did for me as far as family history. Who I am and who came before me was very much instilled by her. I know family history that might have been lost in time had she not let me hear it. She gave me tons of papers and connections in genealogy. In the internet age, we forget that it used to be the best way to preserve history was from spoken stories. Those connections are invaluable to me now as I understand who I am daily.
My grandmother was also a fan of what she called "moxie." It's not a term we use anymore but I understood what she meant. It was my great failing that I could never show her I possessed such day in and day out...not enough to prove to her that I had it all the time. She never made me feel bad about it, but I knew it upset her. She only wanted the best for me, and at times she thought I hung the moon. Perhaps I did...maybe not...but I liked it when she let me know.
I'm sad to have lost her in my life even if she had not been there much these last few years. I can really only blame myself. I could lay some bag at her feet suggesting she did not call me, but all I can do is control my own actions. And I did not call her. It is my own fault and one that will eternally haunt me. I did love her. And I do still. Rest in peace, grandmother. That is all.