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My mom’s mom passed away about 14 years ago. It was right after the passing of my mom’s sister, so we went through a lot in a short period of time. I lost two people that greatly impacted me in a short time. Here’s what I would say to them if I could see them again.
To My Biggest Fan
Grandma, you always thought I hung the moon… and I never thought I deserved your praise.
From the time I was born, to the day I started playing guitar, you thought I could do no wrong.
I look back at pictures of you holding me when I was a baby and you lit up like the night sky.
I could tell by the look on your face that you adored me. And I really wish I could have told you that I adored you too.
I remember being really young and in a wild mood. I excitedly ran up to you to tell you some dumb story about something me and Lori did. You laughed and acted like it was the best story you ever heard.
My soul felt that.
You wanted me to feel important and noticed. That said a lot about you.
There was times that I would watch you at family gatherings in awe.
Being the hostess with the mostest. Cooking from sun up to sun down. Yet, still somehow graceful and collected enough to spend time with us.
Not just physically being present, but truly spending time loving us.
I remember looking at you and seeing love in your eyes. I would catch you welling up from time to time. Looking at your beautiful, loud, quirky family and feeling like the most blessed Queen that ever walked the Earth.
You didn’t give a rat’s rear end if the house got messy or if someone broke a trinket.
You just wanted us to be there with you and for the house to be filled with laughter.
I remember sliding down the banister, taking over-full bubble baths with the Strawberry Shortcake toy, and climbing on your furniture like monkeys.
Anytime you saw us being wild, you’d just smile.
When I learned to play guitar, you would listen to me like I was freaking Evil Presley putting on a show for thousands of people.
You told all of your friends how good I was and you said you just knew that I was going to be a rockstar.
Even though I truly only knew about 3 songs and I would soon lose patience with guitar, you already saw my name in bright lights above a concert venue.
You believed in me more than I believed in me.
Your faith in me was unwavering and truly unbelievable.
I’ve never met anyone who doles out love like you (even though your daughters are a close second)
I try to carry that within myself because I saw how beautiful it was within you.
It somewhat gives me peace knowing that you were always this way and I feel like I still have you on my team.
You would approve of my life and you would cheer me on in every adventure.
You would be sharing my blog on your Facebook and telling your friends that I was the next New York Times Best Selling Author.
You would love Hunter and feed him till he thought he was gonna explode. You would drag him to Bingo and rope him into doing silly projects around the house.
You wouldn’t give us a hard time for not having kids yet or bug us about getting married. You’d be proud of us and happy for us just the way things are.
Your unwavering faith in me has helped me stand a little taller. Have a bit more bravery to do the things I want. Your trust in me has given me the little push I needed to get through life even if you’re not here to walk with me.
Regardless of what I have done or do, you still think I hung the moon.
…. and that kind of love doesn’t stop after death.
It is with me every day and I am grateful from the bottom of my heart.
I hope I can carry it on and spread that love even further.
Because, Carolyn, you’re one class act. I could only hope to be half the woman you are.
I love you.
My Spirit Guide
Aunt Gail, what can I even begin to say to you?
I’m apparently you.
My mom laughs at me and pokes fun at my Gail-isms all the time.
I had so little time with you, but apparently I really absorbed a lot of your energy.
Doing things the natural way and living from the Earth is my kinda thing just like it was yours.
I still make Better Butter and compost anything I can.
If anyone complains of an ache or pain, I’ve got an oil for it.
If a lamp breaks, I fix it or re-purpose it into yard art or something.
There was something about your energy that just spoke to me. The mindfulness, the awareness, the gentleness….
I’ll never forget the library you made in the attic. You created a breeding ground for us to learn and expand our imaginations.
If I showed interest in something you did, you always nurtured that within me and helped me learn.
Pottery, DIY stuff, stained glass…. you let creativity be your guide.
Not many people are interested in being creative just for the sake of it anymore. Its has to make them money or make them famous.
But creativity was a way of life for you. You made your own plate set! You made rugs out of old jeans…. everything you owned had a purpose and a purpose as something else after it no longer served it’s original purpose.
I always felt like your home was my home… and there was never a shortage of love.
Your rock-steady faith always blew my mind.
You believed so deeply in your faith. You didn’t just talk the talk. You walked the walk.
I was pretty faithful as a child, but your commitment always awed me.
Even when you were really, really sick, you believed that God was going to heal you.
But, after your passing, my faith was shook.
I couldn’t understand why God would take away one of the most loving, giving, kind people that I had ever known.
Not only did he take you from us, he let you suffer.
But even through the suffering, you never doubted. You never questioned.
I was never able to get my faith in religion back after your passing and I know that would hurt your heart.
However, I still carry faith. But it’s more a faith in you. The cosmic goodness and love. The positive vibes that flow through the Earth.
I know you’re still with me. Guiding me through the tough times and shining a light out ahead of me so I can see the way.
I smell your aloe lotion sometimes when I’m really contemplating the struggles of life and it just reminds me that I’m not alone.
Especially when things get really hard, I always hear you tell me “Go be creative. Get back to who you are.” So, I do.
I always find myself there.
Among the chaos of paint, yarn and a complete crafting mess, I find myself because I find a bit of you.
So, all I guess I can say is “thank you”. For guiding me when I’m lost or afraid. For pushing me to be me and letting me know that there’s some beauty in every bit of tragedy.
Also, thank you for understanding me even when I didn’t care to understand myself.
The older I’ve gotten, the more I realize that I’m a pretty odd creature. I’m complicated, messy, passionate and unfocused.
But even at a young age, you understood that about me…. and you accepted it.
You didn’t try to change me or force me to be something I wasn’t.
You opened your arms and welcomed all of the weird almost as if you enjoyed that I wasn’t just like everyone else.
You were the first person to have ever done that for me…. and you’re still one of the only that has ever tried.
I love you to the stars and back.