I grew up a 1/2 mile from my grandparents’ house. An easy walk or ride from my house to theirs..
So is it any wonder that so many of my first memories had them in it?
Most of them were good memories.. at least until that heartbreaking day in fifth grade.. when they loaded up their new 5th wheel and drove to Florida for the winter ..
Even after that LONG winter FINALLY ended.. I collected good memories with them.
As the years passed, the visits became less frequent. I moved to Missouri with my husband (for his job). I became busy with my children… and schedules didn’t always line up.
… still visits were a treasure ..
The last time I saw my gram, she didn’t recognize me. My aunts warned me ahead of time that it might happen.
But in that moment? That moment that I realized she indeed did NOT recall who I was?
It hurt .. for a moment ..
Then she smiled at me.. and patted my hand..
and I realized..
it didn’t matter if she remembered me..
Because I remembered her..
I remembered her keeping special toys at her house for us.. A little people’s school and camper..
I remembered how she would always keep fruit around to give us..
how she taught me to eat rhubarb with sugar…
how she loved the color blue, but “hated” her red hair..
How she loved working with her roses and her rhododendrons.. and her fruit trees..
how every card I ever got was simply signed “Gram K”…
I remember how she greeted every LEFT handed person she met.. how she taught us to make her potato salad.. her spending hours with us sewing clothes.. her salt & pepper collection.. and Norman Rockwell plates..
…singing with her.. laughing with her ..
And when I said “good-bye” at the end of that last visit? She smiled and said “I’m so glad I got to meet you.” That same smile that would light up her eyes.
So you see? It isn’t important that my Gram didn’t remember me in the end.. because it wasn’t really about me.
..and her legacy that she leaves behind. And as long as I remember her? As long as I continue to retell her stories and sayings?
Then she will continue to live on in our hearts ..
So tell her stories I shall..