After 37 years, I don't think I truly knew her and that's the worst part about her death for me. I don't mourn like other people. I try to be supportive for those left behind and I try to remind them of what the deceased was like in life. Personally I try to imagine what I'd like to see people do when I die as though I were looking in on them from beyond the veil and I can tell you I don't want to see them sad. I want them to remember me and say how awesome I was, so that's what I do for people.
My grandma was awesome.
First of all, she put up with an artist for 57 years. My grandpa Joe died in 2003 and he was a great artist, but I can see them being at odds over a great many things, especially early in their lives. My grandma saw WWII, the building AND tearing down of the Berlin Wall. She was alive for 17 Olympic games. She saw Kennedy's assassination, the first man on the moon, the first man in space, and Pearl Harbor.
What I don't know about her is what she did during all this time. I'm sure I'll find out from my family, but all I know is that at one point she worked as a banker. She raised three kids, two of which had kids of their own. She had to drive my grandpa around because he didn't have a license until late in their lives. She always made dinner for Christmas eve and it was usually delicious. (I say usually not to be mean, but there were times as a kid when I couldn't get through the adult dishes.)
I know her family came from a long line of German and Irish citizenry. Her family line was Ganley and Rueves. She has family in Minnesota and I've always made fun of the fact that they all listen to or have been mentioned on Prairie Home Companion. Once about 15 years ago, she bummed a cigarette from me and my brother as we were outside smoking. (I probably shouldn't tell my mom that one.)
Ms. A said to me "...the Jedi just don't feel death as a great sadness." This is very true for me. I have been devastated before, I have been sad and depressed. I feared the loss of my kids to the point of bawling for hours. But when someone dies, I don't have the same reaction. My grandma died quickly, apparently painlessly. She'd lead a good long life with as many hardships and joys as anyone could need. I don't feel sad she's gone, I feel happy that I knew her when she was alive. I'm grateful she gave birth to my mom.
I'm not real happy about that cigarette though, sneaky "ex-smoker." :-)
at 1:00 PM