For Grandma (Rest in Peace)


I wrote this piece for my grandmother about a year ago. She was not expected to live through the night that I wrote this. She ended up living another year because, what can I say? My grandma was a tough cookie. She passed away this morning, but this time I did get a chance to make a phone call and talk to her one last time. She’s at peace. I’m at peace. I’m reposting this for her. 

I guess this is the goodbye that I won’t get to tell you.

I’m here stuck at school studying for my exams that don’t seem to matter anymore. From the sound of things you wouldn’t even know I was there if I could say goodbye, but still. It seems like the world should stop turning to see you off. But that’s the thing about life–you don’t get to pause it.

My sister and I always joked that you’d  outlive all of us. You always seemed so strong for 89…90…91… You seemed timeless in a sense. But I guess no one is. Not really.

I don’t know if there’s a heaven, but of course, I wouldn’t tell you that if I thought you would really be reading this. I guess whether or not I know won’t change anything, but I wish…

I wish right now, more than ever, that I knew. I wish it were as easy to believe as it used to be when I was a child and heaven was a shiny, golden castle in the clouds that was as real and as wonderful to me as sunshine or your warm, sweet potato pie.

I wish I could know.

I wish I could know that you were in good hands.

I wish my faith were stronger for you. Oh, how I wish that.

But since I can’t know, I’ll hope.

I’ll hope that heaven is a place where Matlock is always on and where the book shelves are always filled with Readers Digest condensed books.

Where Debbie and Neil and Lee and Grandpa are waiting.

I hope it’s not hard.

I hope it’s like falling asleep.

I hope it’s like rest.

I hope it’s like warmth with God’s love all around.

I hope that with all the pieces of my broken faith, glued together with my love for you.

But since I can’t know, life seems more precious. So short, even at 92. So fragile. A vapor slipping through my hands.

I’ll always remember what that life meant to me.

I love you, Grandma.



7 thoughts on “For Grandma (Rest in Peace)

  1. This brought tears, what a lovely tribute to your Grandma. So sorry for your loss, so sorry that all of our lives are too short. Hoping against hope that heaven is beyond her wildest dreams.

  2. What a wonderful tribute to your grandmother. So sorry for your loss.

  3. I just caught this blog through ‘freshly pressed’ and it made me think about my grandmother and how close I was to her. I have been out of college for many years now but when I was a freshman in 1993 she actually got an 1800 number for me so I could call her as often as I liked. It is so nice to see that there are people who appreciate the grandparents as you do. They are truly a blessing in our lives and represent rich lineage, wisdom and courage that is irreplaceable.

    I am truly sorry for your loss and may your family find comfort in keeping traditions alive. I am sure Matlock is on.. I think every Grandmother loved Perry Mason. :)

  4. Praying for you and your family today.

  5. Sarah, this is such a sweet tribute. My condolences to your family.

  6. All the hugs and love and hope for you and your family, dear friend. <3

  7. Dear Sarah, this took me back to the time I spent with my grandmother when she was dying. We thought she had only a few hours left to live and I was the first family member to get to her. I sat up with her all night, helping her on and off the commode, helping her at the end of her life as she had helped me at the start of mine. All that night she kept making the sign of the cross and slipping her hand under her pillow which was where she always used to keep her rosary beads. I was in a very bad place at the time but that memory of her. absolutely secure in her loving relationship with God when she couldn’t recognise any of us anymore, has always stayed with me. She had left us behind and seemed so happy to be moving on.

    I’m so sorry that you have this sadness to cope with and I know you have a lot of other stuff going on. In sympathy, Juliet

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