…4 long (yet short) years.
I haven’t forgotten. I still don’t have the voice to say what I want so I’ll let the words I wrote four years ago sound out.
There is so much I want to say about my Gram, but I don’t know where to start and I honestly wouldn’t be able to stand before you today because of the impact of losing her has had on us all. I’m sure you all have different poignant memories and stories to share, which I feel is her greatest gift. I struggled with the thoughts of being strong enough to speak but I would rather leave it to someone who could read these words with the strength and conviction that my Gram had when she spoke. She was an outstanding woman who would do anything for her family or friends and it brings me peace to realize that we all have a place in heart for ever as she does in ours. There are so many stories that I could tell in celebration of her life but, I’d rather left them unsaid so you can reflect and cherish on your own special memories that are uniquely yours. But, I would like you people to know the woman I knew as my Gram and Mom’s mom. She had unwavering patience and strength with each one of us as we struggled and continue to struggle to find our own place in the world. She had a heart big enough for everyone and the love was never ending…I will never forget sitting around the organ and listening to her sing her hymns, such a beautiful sound. I admired her in so many ways, just as I know my family also does. The one thing that stands out in my mind is her hands…she made so many things and just knew the right spot to rub, place to tickle, and just when you needed an outreached hand for guidance and support. The roles may have reversed as the years went on but I think that was her plan and her lesson for us. There is a poem I would like to share called “My Grandmother’s Hands” which has brought me fond memories when I was away and missing home.
My Grandmother’s Hands
– Author unknown
“My grandmothers hands are ancient but beautiful.
They have wrinkles that stretched all around her fingers and spread over the backs of her hands.
But her palms are soft and tender with a fleshy pink coloring to them.
I often wonder about my grandmother’s hands.
How many socks have they mended?
Are they old but strong from countless hours of scrubbing floors?
Are her palms beautifully soft from soaking in warm water and soft soap while she was washing dishes?
Are her hands nimble from labouring in her youth?
To these questions I have no answers.
I have only the hope to someday hold her hand again while she guides me down the path of history using the road map of wrinkles in her hands.”
I cannot even begin to tell all the knowledge and advice she has given to each of us over the years but one thing has stuck in my mind since last summer and it’s something I need to put into practise now. After visiting her one day last June, just as I was leaving, she stopped on the stoop of the door with a tear in her eye and said “Laura, I know your heart is broken, but go on with what you are doing, pick up the pieces and God will help with the rest.” It was good advice then and great advice now. Thank you Gram.
We’re all going to miss you Gram but we will see you again…