Tomorrow marks the three-year anniversary of my paternal grandmother’s passing. I want to honor her memory by telling you a little about my grandmother.
She was 92 years old when she took her last breath. She had a dog named Mutt (actually there was a series of dogs named Mutt). Her house always smelled of fried chicken, collard greens and rice. She served rice with every meal and it was not uncommon to find a skinned opossum boiling on her stove. She liked hot tea and orange slices (the chewy candies). She collected dolls. She spoke with a Charleston accent rooted in a broken Geechee dialect. I barely understood her stories. She called me Sharon. She had a lot of household remedies for everyday ailments. She mothered fourteen children. She never drove a car. I can still see her hands, her nose, her wrinkles. I can still see her sitting on the porch with a switch in her hand for no particular reason. I can still hear her voice.
She was the only grandmother I ever knew. Actually, she was the only grandparent I really knew. I am proud to be a leaf in her lineage.
Recently, I have learned of several grandmothers and grandfathers passing away, leaving their legacy to those who were born of their name. I’ve mourned with their loved ones. I’ve felt their loss in my own loss and in the losses to come. It is a painful concept, the circle of life. Understanding and accepting the ebb and flow of birth and death can take a life time. But in your cycle, take the time to live and love with the blessing of those gone on and the hope of those to come.
We miss you Grandma Rosa and all your miscalling.