I'm going to have to see if I have any pictures here in London of my gran and I. Anything I do have is at least 10 years old which is the last time I saw her. The picture above is my gran and grandpa (who passed away over 12 yrs ago) when they got engaged. I got it off the Internet if you can believe.
One of the worst things about living abroad is not getting to see family as much as I'd like. I missed my other Gran's funeral because I didn't have enough money to cancel a trip to Rome scheduled AND fly to the USA. I chose Rome because it would have been the most financial loss. I felt horrible but the day of the funeral I went to the Vatican and lit a candle for her. I know its no consolation prize for being there, but I think my gran would understand (at least I hope so).
Well now my last gran, my last grandparent living is on her last breath. I'm having a lot of feelings run through my head because I wasn't expecting this to happen as quick as it is especially round the holidays. I thought at least I'd have till the new year. Life doesn't work that way I guess.
I loved all my grandparents dearly...they were more like surrogate parents actually, but this gran I was closest to. I used to call her every week for 10+ years until it just wasn't possible anymore to carry a phone conversation with her (she has advanced dementia). She was one of my best friends during times when I never had any friends or family to look to and felt very very alone.
I feel so helpless being so far away. I'm angry that I don't have my own money to go to the funeral or to buy the flowers myself that I've sent to her recently. My parents are paying for my ticket and James has paid for the flowers. I'm angry that I am not in a position to do this myself.
I know life is crazy because we all know we HAVE to die, but resist it anyway. I know that although her mind is gone my gran in her heart is the same. I know its selfish of me to want her to stay cause I need her in my life......but I still have these feelings. Loss and grieving are part of life. What is it about losing grandparents though that is so much harder?
On a very long run yesterday I was thinking about why this has to be round the holidays and then I thought of how some of my favorite memories of my grandparents and of gran were round this time. Maybe there's a reason for this timing? Maybe its a way for all of us to be together on her fondest time of the year.
Although I'm filled with anger and sadness that its happening, I also have a huge sense of gratitude. I feel like I should start this week of Thanksgiving with a prayer of gratitude for what influence she's been in my life. She saved me in so many ways....she made a very difficult childhood bearable....she was my friend and I am grateful that she is who she is.
I'd be grateful for prayers for my gran at the moment. Prayers that she will not be in pain anymore and that she'll be surrounded by love when she does finally go and prayers that we'll all be able to cope with the loss of such an important person in our life.