I have been thinking of my paternal Grandma as of late. I have been wishing that I could call her and ask about all of the ups and downs that her life held.
Being born January 1, 1929 she had lived the reality of the Great Depression. I remember some bits of her stories, and her buttered noodles and toast—a Lenten substitute for fish when none could be procured.
She watch as a nation entered another Great War, her own Love wasn’t drafted, but I am sure she knew others that had been called. She missed the parade to commemorate the end of the war because her curls weren’t dried.
She married young and her parents disapproved of her marrying a Protestant boy. I can’t remember how many anniversaries they celebrated exactly, somewhere near 70 it seems. They lost a baby, raised two other girls and two boys.
She lost to the ever advancing enemy of Parkinson’s, but in her final weeks she rallied for that birthday she loved—Born the first girl of 1929, she had a picture in the paper with her mother.
I had returned to Michigan to say my goodbyes. I looked into her hazel eyes and search for what I would carry of her.
Grandma. I will make your buttered noodles and toast for my kids. I will tell them that we are not the first people to be in a time with no certain outcome. I will tell them that when we feel we have little we still have more than enough to be generous with. I will tell them that while we celebrate the history overcoming we can still be sad in the time of unknowing.
After all that is the week we are in—the palms are already drying on the street and people have returned to their homes. By the end of Holy Week people will be dead and hope may be lost. We don’t always know when on our cosmic calendar when the easter will come, so we better curl our hair in case.