Saturday, March 09, 2013

We're full, Grandma. We're full.



Her world wasn't large, but it was deep.

How do you accurately describe someone, having spent 18 years living a stone's throw away, without reducing them to merely a collection of character traits?

We live in a day and age when selfishness is encouraged.  We're even made to feel guilty for being selfless.  I admit to falling into the trap, no doubt.  Sometimes I even run headlong with full purpose and intent to serve me, only me.  I have no recollection of Grandma ever, ever doing a single thing for herself.  Ever.  It wouldn't even have occurred to her.  I think today's feminists would call her "oppressed."  If that's true, she was the happiest oppressed person I've ever seen!  Grandma was always, always happy.  She had a continual smile on her face.  I only have one distinct memory of seeing her saddened with tears and it was because of someone else's plight, not her own.  Living for others was her life.  Feeding them, fretting for them, loving them.  The biggest part of Grandma died along with Grandpa.  Waking in the morning and having only herself to care for, to feed, to fret over, caused her so much distress.  She didn't have anything to do.  It was as if she was uncomfortable being with just herself.  I want to carry that part of her with me...think less, much less, of myself and focus on the needs of those around me.

I'm a bit uncomfortable with all the apologies and sympathy I've received with her passing.  It almost makes me feel guilty that I'm not as sad as everyone thinks I should be.  I'm so happy that she's home.  That she has reached the end of life's struggles and is on to eternal joy and peace!  There is the smallest bit of sorrow, but it is so interwoven with joy that it can't be measured.

Here's to living deeply and keeping rooted in what matters.  You don't have to travel far or be well-educated to leave a deep impression on those you live among.  I strive to teach that, to live that.  Grandma was truly an extraordinary person.  And she'd laugh and laugh to hear us say that!

My memories of Grandma and Grandpa can be found on the Home post and the House post.

12 comments:

Mindy said...

Such a beautiful post. I only knew her after your grandpa died so it is nice to get a picture of what she was like before. I never saw her without her smile. So lovely......

The Chairman's Wife said...

Appreciated this post. My grandparents were good friends of your grandparents decades ago...

Neisha said...

Yes, beautiful post. I met her a couple of times when she was in meeting with Becky.

Sorry I didn't make the connect between her and your grandma that you spoke of on tea.

Mimi/Susan said...

I would love for my grandchildren to remember me this way! Just beautiful!

Lani said...

Love this. Love you. Thank you for this.

Pam said...

Love this post, too.

The J's said...

This is beautiful Shannon, and I understand just what you mean. I also could have described my grandma very much the same way, and she is the one I would strive to be most like!

Anita said...

Just me adding my 'this is beautiful' sentiments as well! I especially love the title of the post. xo

amylin said...

Sorry about your grandma, Shannon... loved your post. <3

Ethel said...

Lovely picture of her. Yes..she had a constant smile..so happy for her..she's where she has longed for...

Ethel said...

I just did a "bucket list" and this post really puts it to shame cuz i sound completely selfish in it..i think i included my family in maybe 2 out of the 18 items. I need to work on old fashioned values methinks!!!!

Shae Tilson said...

Love, love, love this. This post made me smile. It sounds like she was an amazing person and a wonderful grandmother. Hugs to you, my friend.