Memories of my Grandma

214I’ve been thinking about my grandmother a lot lately, it seems like the tiniest things will remind me of her or make me think about her. She recently passed, and I made my trek back home for the funeral short notice. My grandmother was a strong willed, immovable force kind of woman. She was a matriarch, the head of everyone, and we didn’t quite see eye-to-eye on many things. Yet, she and I had a lot more in common and did have some fun times.

She was a green thumb type of person, naturally very gifted with plants. My grandmother was also a big bird watcher, so lately when I’ve been seeing birds I tend to think of her. It’s just a passing thought of how she’d love it, with the birds being so close, and some of them being the types she’d love to see.

I try not to remember my grandmothers funeral, how I knew that this time I wasn’t too young to understand what was going on. It was my first open casket, or at least the first and only one I remember in my life. It was my brother who prompted me to actually look in the casket, to say my goodbye fully instead of just trying to look past the person in there without really seeing it. There was a time when he wanted to say goodbye to a person, and unfortunately, he couldn’t see them and hadn’t see them for so many years and he wasn’t given the chance.

I kept on saying in my head, whatever you do, don’t cry. Don’t show them tears, just don’t do it. I’m not very close with that side of the family, I’ve always been an outsider, and I’ve accepted that as I’ve gotten older. This promise to myself not to break down would, of course, be broken.

It was the last goodbye to my grandmother, the time before her burial. I saw the person in front of me kiss my grandmother goodbye, and I couldn’t fight it. I cried, seeing her for the last time, my mother beside me whispering for me to stop crying, and then she starts crying too. It was surreal, seeing her there for the last time, almost like it was impossible, yet it was possible.

Now I think of her and little things remind me, a fleeting thought, birds, flowers, memories flooding back for a moment.