It’s been three weeks since my grandmother died. Saturday 16th January.
Her death was unexpected. She was 82 years old. We all thought that she would live past 90 for some reason.
A full life she lived.
She travelled all over the world, visiting places I’ve yet to visit.
She and my grandfather would go out on drives together all over the country, visiting places I’ve yet to visit, even though Trinidad and Tobago is much smaller than the world.
I think she lived well. Well except later on in her life as she got older.
Old age is not so nice to some people. Rheumatoid arthritis is not easy to live with. Heart problems otherwise. and loneliness too. She decided to live by herself rather than to move in with us after my grandfather passed away. She alone would know why she chose that. I assume nothing.
Ma was like a second mother to me. After my parents divorce, my mother moved in back with my grandmother and grandfather. So I lived with them for almost 25 years.
She would be the one to take care of me most of the time. Cooking and looking after me. And I was not an easy person to live with.
She would complain that she thought I forgot about her every time I went to visit. To drop off food or to fix something. I probably didn’t visit enough. It’s easy to forget people in your life when life itself gets in the way.
Balance is hard enough to achieve.
I would try to take the kids and visit. It’s not like she lived far. A 5-minute drive or a 20-minute walk. Yet visits would be far and apart.
Last year for the first time I didn’t visit her for Christmas Day. My aunt said she asked why I didn’t come, although she didn’t complain when I when to visit her in the new year.
I didn’t forget about her, I just chose to go somewhere else. Would I have chosen differently had I known it would be her last Christmas? Yes, I would have. Now there would be no other Christmases with her.
It’s taken me three weeks to write this. I didn’t think that I had the right words to say, and still don’t think so. But I wrote it anyway.
Perhaps it’s because it still doesn’t feel like she’s gone. But I know that she’s gone. It’s hard to write about. I just don’t know what I feel. The only feeling that I could describe is the feeling of loss.
I don’t feel sad. I don’t feel angry. I don’t feel disappointment.
I just feel loss.
I’m happy for having my grandmother in my life for as long as I have. Many people are not so fortunate. And my grandmother treated me well overall. She wasn’t so easy to live with either.
I will miss her.