‘Indeed, goodness and mercy will pursue me all the days of my life; I will dwell in the house of the Lord for endless days.” Psalm 23:6
It is a Wednesday. It started out as just a normal Wednesday. Got the kids off to school, got a shower, got everything ready to go when my phone rang. It was my Mom, letting me know that my beautiful Gram had moved on to the next phase of her life, after nine and half decades on this Earth.
I don’t think that tears have really stopped since then. It really is true that you do not appreciate something until you no longer have it. It is true, for the past several years she has been locked inside her own mind battling dementia. You still take it for granted that you can stop by her room at the home after work, just to say hello. It is weird to get slightly emotional when you are just reading a local news article, or listening to the radio, or even just sitting in front of your computer terminal at work and listening to the world just go by. Yes, it is true, you do not know when the time will come, what day, or what hour, you can only hope that you can go out like she did.
Nine and half decades. That is enough time to watch the world go to war, change from agricultural to industrial, and ring in the new century. I can only hope to see that kind of major changes in this world. She seen and heard so much in her life. She outlived several Popes, and was just as a devout Catholic as they come. Oh, I can only pray that I get to go out like that.
The best part about my grandmother was her. As weird as that is to say, but she was as unique as anyone that I have ever met anywhere. I can remember programming her VCR in order to tape her “programs” as she would call them. It was basically the entire EWTN line up. It was funny, but I actually liked doing that for her. Yeah, I was eleven and complained the entire time, but still, I do miss being able to do that. I didn’t know how much she was into the Catholic faith until later on in life, she was not one that would push anyone to go… but I do know that I went to Mass with her on a few occasions. She never knew any of her grandchildren’s names when she was trying to call them, but up until a few years ago, I could always count on a birthday card.. addressed to Master Lucas Andrew Sauls. I have yet to figure out what she thought I mastered. When I would come over, she would always call me (after a few minutes of calling me everyone else’s name) Lucas Andrew Sauls the First… and I would always add “and only” to the end of her comment. Her apartment always smelled like cigarette smoke and she always had a tissue stuffed into her blue lay-z-boy chair. To this day, she still had tissues and that blue chair. Now, it is not the original chair, that old one was replaced in the nineties with an updated model… and possible since then, but either way, they have all been blue and they have all been a lay-z-boy. I could just sit in her apartment for hours, and listen to whatever was going on. I would always mess with her date reminder on the top of her TV. Nothing says loving like moving the date to 57… knowing full well she would not find it until after I left, then let me know all about it when I cam back over. She could paint pretty good, and she had one of the oldest indoor exercise bikes that got more use from her grandkids than her.
So yeah, that is just a brief summary of the memories that I have of a wonderful person. Oh, there are so many floating around right now, and I know that I will have many more in the days to come. I am not crying because I am sad per se. I am actually happy that she is finally on her way to her final home. She is no longer hurting, suffering, or having to deal with dementia anymore. She will always still be here to help, just in a different capacity. I honestly don’t know why I am crying at all, I am celebrating a life that was full. I am sure the tears will stop soon enough. All I ask is that everyone pray for the repose of her soul and that she gets to be granted the fullness of life in Heaven, which she deserves. I pray that I can only be so lucky in my life to be so loved, be so devout, and to be cared for as much as she was here in this world.