Thursday, July 7, 2011

So 94 years, huh?

You don't mourn the death, you celebrate the life.

(GG is the hottie sitting down ;)

That's what I'm telling myself, anyway. It's weird being that person in the room that people don't know how to act around because they just lost someone.

This morning my great-grandmother, who we nicknamed "GG" passed away in Jamaica. My immediate reaction was one of depression and anger because I wouldn't be able to say goodbye to her since I don't even have a passport, nor do I have the money to travel overseas. I kept thinking about the last time I had seen her - four years ago? 4 years ago I was nothing like I am now. I was 17, spoiled rotten, and such a little ball of fire combined with this know-it-all attitude.

Then I remembered that even though that was the last time she physically saw me, we had spoken on the phone since then. She had told me only a few weeks ago how proud she was of me for being the first in my generation to graduate college. She told me to "keep sweet", and she had even spoken to J (even though I was panicking about that too because she was under the false impression that we were engaged, but whatever). Now looking back on it, I'm glad she had a chance to speak to him. She had no idea who he was but loved him just because he loved me, lol.

Part of me wishes I could tell her how sorry I am for not calling more often, and when I did call for only speaking to her briefly because I had difficulty understanding her accent. Part of me wishes I could tell her that I'm not angry about my 13th birthday and that the 8-weeks I spent with her in Jamaica - complaining non-stop about the heat and mosquitoes and overall lack of civilization at the time - was actually one of the greatest learning experiences I've ever had. I wish I could tell her that I'm going to take care of my grandmother, who was like her best friend, and that I promise, promise, promise I'll learn how to cook.

Even though I can't tell her these things, I want to celebrate the good from her life. She was 94-years-old when she passed away. That means she had 94-years with her daughter, grandchildren, and great grandchildren. She was the kind of person who I never looked at in terms of her age because she was always so lively. She was never one of those people who you'd dread asking how they were doing because they'd go on and on about all the pain they were in. She was always so independent (runs in the family) and would instead want to talk about how you were doing.

My siblings and I would always joke that GG was going to outlive us and while we knew this wasn't realistic, we still held onto that belief because it brought us peace. Now that it's happened, I'm just reminding myself that now she's not in any more pain. R.I.P, GG.

16 comments:

  1. This is just so beautifully written.
    Not to make it any weirder but i just never know what to say in these situations, Sorry.
    May she Rest In Peace!

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  2. i'm sorry for your loss!
    Forever Chic,
    Amber

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  3. i'm sorry for your loss, R.I.P xx

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  4. I'm so sorry for your loss. I understand what you're going through. Last year my grandmother died at the age of 95 and I wasn't able to attend the funeral services because I was out of state doing my residency for school. It's hard not being there but your great grandmother knows your heart. I can only wish to live 94 years so just know that she lived her life and that she's at a better place. Take care of yourself. May she rest in peace.

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  5. I'm sorry for your lost, may she rest in piece! I'm sure she knows how much you love her! beautiful post! xx Joice

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  6. I had a similar experience two years ago with my grandfather who lived overseas in Iran. From this I learned when a person who has lived for so long and touched so many lives passes away the loss is exceptionally difficult because everyone is affected. But at the same time there is comfort in knowing that they made such a powerful impact during their time with us. And closure is very important. She had a chance to tell you how proud of you she is and she approved of J. So as you remember the good times you can also remember her pride in you and the hopes she had for your future.

    Best wishes and my sincere condolences during your time of loss.

    ~SP

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  7. I'm really sorry to hear about your great-grandmother. I know that we're not physically friends but please let me know if there is anything I can do, nonetheless. Don't worry about not being able to tell her all the things that you forgot to when she was here. Just remember that she loved you for who you were and I know for a fact that she was proud of you.

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  8. Thank God your "GG" had an opportunity most of us pray to possibly have, the chance to be on this earth for 94 years with her loved one's enjoying life however it may have come. I send my deepest condolences for the loss of your great grandmother but know that you're right to celebrate the wonderful life that she had.

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  9. What a beautiful post! Sounds like your GG and mine had a lot in common. They were both very sweet independent women. I lost mine when I was 17 also. We are blessed that we got to meet our great grandmothers and know them. Sorry to hear about your loss hun. I'll keep you in my prayers.

    -Nikki

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  10. I am sorry to hear about your GG.

    I am sending lots of love to you and your family from Seattle.

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  11. Sorry for your loss. I'm praying you find comfort in the memories.

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  12. Im so so sorry to hear this and after you were wanting to get back there it breaks my heart. 94 is a long time and she should be celebrated. I hope you find comfort in knowing she lived a long life full of love if you were in it! My deepest sympathy and love. If you need anything let me know!!! XOXO

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  13. This made me cry but then I smiled thinkin of my grandma and the times that we had grandmothers are so special and I know she knew that you loved her no matter what and she is still watching over you now.. I love the part where you and your family joked about her outliving yall. that made me smile.. hugs and kisses to you and sorry for you loss..

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  14. aww hun... i'm so sorry to hear this. my condolences. i can relate to what you're going through, I lost my grandpa 3 years ago, and he was 83 years of age when he passed away. and you're absolutely right, we must celebrate the life our dear loved one lived. my prayers go out to your grandma.

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  15. She continues to live in you. Nice post. Thanks for sharing and feel free to drop by me too, soon.

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