My granny died six years ago today. She smoked herself to death. It was a long and painful death that was very difficult to watch but that's how she went. She was 70 years old. It was a Wednesday and I went to work normally but had a feeling that it would be that day. As I exited a meeting that afternoon, I checked my phone and had a voicemail from my dad. It was the call. My mom had been with her when she took her last, labored breath and that was that. I returned to the office, told my bosses that I would be gone for a few days and headed to my Papa's house. Family cars were everywhere but everyone was inside. When I walked up to the house, my Papa met me on the porch and we just sat together and cried. Knowing it was coming didn't make it any easier. But that was just one day. Her whole life trumped that one day.
I miss my Granny constantly. Once I found out I was pregnant, my longing to have her back in my life was almost unbearable. I could barely think of her without losing it. Honestly, I can barely mention her lately without tearing up. Writing this post is more difficult than I can even explain. But I need to write it. I need to talk about her. I didn't think I could miss her more than I already did.
I met my mister the weekend before she died. She never got to meet him. He never got to meet her. That still breaks my heart. 2006 was one of the best and most difficult years of my life with three major deaths and meeting my future husband.
I wish she could see me now, meet my husband, see my stomach grow, listen to me bitch, console me through my fears, see our garden, love on the beast, laugh with me and most of all, meet her first great granddaughter.
I hate that our daughter won't know her personally but I take comfort in the fact that she'll know her through us, through stories, through pictures, through her legacy. I selfishly wish she were still here but gratefully know how lucky I was to have her make a difference in my life.
It's hard to believe it's been six years. We've all moved on but she's still there. She's always there. She's with me in the kitchen, she's outside with me enjoying the Oklahoma summer, she's sitting with one of the cats in her lap, she's helping me power through my fears of pregnancy and motherhood. She's there.
And this, this is how I'll always remember her. This picture sums her up. It makes my heart happy. It makes missing her not so painful. It makes it all ok.