My grandmother passed away today.
This wasn’t a surprise. We’ve known for the better part of a month that the end was nearing. Her pancreas stopped working, you see… worn out from nearly 96 years on this Earth.
The doctors told us that this would probably cause her to stop eating and gradually fade away, probably going unconscious and then just slipping away. They said she would not suffer, and they were right. She passed away peacefully this afternoon after spending the day in good spirits with her three children. But far from being unconscious, she was alert and aware all day. Then she simply went to sleep and never woke up.
I take all this as a blessing. She was a woman of faith and she said herself, just a few days ago, that she had made her peace and that she was ready to go when the good Lord saw fit to take her. But I’ll still miss her, and I can’t promise there will be no tears.
More than ever, now I’m thankful for the decades of fond memories I have with her. Of my four grandparents, I was easily closest to my Grandmother Adams – or, as I will always know her, Nana.
My Grandmother Cross died when I was 6. I have some fractured memories of her, but sadly, they are few and far between.
My Grandfather Adams died when I was about 10. I have more memories of him, and I remember being particularly tearful at his funeral, but I think that had more to do with the fact that I had just started to understand what death was. It was more shock than love.
My Grandfather Cross died when I was in University. I did get more of a chance to know him, and I did feel the loss of a loved one at his funeral, but even so, I was much closer to Nana. I couldn’t help but be.
I spent summers with her as a child. I lived with her throughout my years at University, and afterwards. We traveled together, we played cards together, we cooked together and ate meals together. She drove me to school on cold or rainy days. She cared for me like my mother. And while she was certainly family, she was also one of my best friends.
Nana, I love you. I will miss you forever, but I will take comfort and find joy in our shared memories.