in june 2010, our lives got turned upside down in the best possible way: the birth of our awesome kiddo, john. in october 2013, brother charlie charged into our life to change the status quo again. and june 2016 brought us brother ben to round out our trio.

i'm proud to have "mom" at the top of the list of titles on my resume, but i'm also still a hard-working professional. how does a working mom juggle work and family? ride along with me and see if i can figure it out!

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

grandma

this was going to be a jaunty little blog about my trip to chicago - more adventures of the world-wandering dairy cow, some waxing philosophical about missing my family, the story of an awesome hotel upgrade, some pride in my husband for taking such awesome care of the boys.

i'll save my traveling tale for another day. instead, i find myself in a somber mood.

this morning, one of my favorite people on the face of this planet took her leave from it. my beautiful, sassy, spunky, brilliant grandmother passed away.

like all of the family, i knew this day would come, and probably sooner than later. she was 91 years old, and while she was doing mighty darn well for 91, that age comes with an expectation that time is limited. she spent a good part of this past weekend with her family, much of whom was in town for mardi gras. i understand that she was in good spirits and good form right up until the end. and she went quickly, which is as much of a blessing as anyone could ask.

also like all of the family (or i would assume, as i shouldn't speak for them) i am only beginning to process that she is gone. for the five years that our family lived in baton rouge, the greatest blessing for us was getting to be close to grandma. i got to be friends with her while we lived there - to know her as an adult in a way that many people never have the chance to know their grandparents. she knew john very well, and he knew her. she met charlie at christmas time.

but what my boys will not be able to know is the lover of books whose library upstairs was always ready to be raided for new material to read. they will not know the biting political commentary grandma could offer even in her later years - the witty repartee she would interject into a conversation just when you thought she was too tired and quiet to have known what was going on.

they will not know the adventurous woman who, with her husband, my papa, took my brother and cousin and i on a trip from maryland to louisiana in a red van, camping along the way, dodging storms at mammoth caverns and looking at horses running through the fields in kentucky, stopping in huntsville to learn about rockets and space, and laughing all the while about our traveling band's crazy antics.

they will not know why "blueberry killer" can reduce a generation of my family to giggling fits.*

they will not hear from her mouth her remarkable stories about being a young newspaperwoman, of not thinking she ever needed to get married, but then of settling down with a newspaperman and beginning a wild brood of five boys and a girl.

they will not know her love of her dogs.

they cannot hear, in their heads, her voice as she says to my papa, "oh, ed," when exasperated at his behavior or his jokes or whatever else might exasperate her.

but i can. i can hear it now, as he's probably welcoming her into heaven wearing a hat that says "i'm not prejudiced - i hate everyone."

i can remember all of these things, and so much more. and i will never grow tired of remembering.

because as sad as i am today as i type this, i am so very happy to have known this woman. and so very proud to carry her genes. and so grateful for the other descendants of "mama and papa."

goodbye, grandma. from the crazy young broad to the crazy old bat, i love you.

*years ago, grandma went nuts with a broom attacking a bug on her kitchen floor ... that wound up being a blueberry. a very smashed blueberry.

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