… on pre-grief, posthumously

I’ve found myself thinking a lot about Granny and Grampa (a.k.a., the Old Yankee Man) lately. Anniversaries often bring such thoughts to the forefront, of course. The fifth-year anniversary of Granny’s death was January 31st of this year (exactly one week after The Great Escape).

I still smile when I think about that day, which was at first terrifying, and then flat out hysterical. I can still see us making our way from her beloved mini-cooper, across a sheet of ice and toward the barn. Granny clung to my arm, both of us laughing out loud, her apologizing for forgetting she wasn’t supposed to drive, and then insisting I write about it so SHE could read about it!

By the time they left this world, we’d lived together for twenty-five years. We created a multi-generational household – Me, JoHn, Granny, Grampa, and three kids (then three and a half), along with a smattering of dogs and cats – simply because we all wanted to. Not everyone can do that, emotionally, financially, and/or physically. How lucky were we that it worked for us? (I’ll answer that… super lucky (and forever grateful)).

I’ve found myself going through old notes, and old feelings, on and off these past weeks. I was the healthcare proxy for both Grampa and Granny, so amassed pages and pages of medical notes, calendars, wishes and desires (mine and theirs), along with a bazillion miscellaneous quotes, questions, and observations.  The following is from the scribbles in a notebook I was keeping back in 2015. The words brought me straight back to the Old Yankee Man’s bedside. We did so much in absolute silence those last few weeks, though we talked a lot too. We could always talk, and about real stuff… stuff that mattered to him, to me.

He was one of my life’s Most Important People.

I am forever grateful he trusted me to be by his side at the end of his time here.



I sit with you
In quiet

Love and Knowing
Silently spill
Over puzzle pieces
Styrofoam cups of tea

Your colors are leaving you
Your body, your face
Even your eyes

Do they go first, I wonder
Simply slip through a door
I cannot see
Mapping the way to a place
I cannot know

Later, I look up from my book
To be sure that your chest
Is still rising, falling
And I pause

Taking you in
All that you are in this moment
All who you have ever been
I begin to understand

You no longer need your colors
Because you are turning into light.


Thanks for readin’.

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