On April 2nd of 2014, a year ago today, my grandmother left this world due to old age.

I took off of work because my mom called saying that the doctors couldn't help her that time and that she was going to pass. I took the day off of work to stay home with my sister, and we went to get ice cream and to the tattoo shop so that I could get a tattoo in remembrance of her. She did pass away around 6 p.m. that evening.

I have had mixed feelings since that day. I have been angry at my grandma for not going to the hospital when she was obviously sick, and convincing my uncle not to take her. I have been mad at my uncle for not being smart and going against her wishes to take her to the hospital sooner. I have been sad because my grandma opted out of another year with everyone. I have been overjoyed because she is now reunited with my grandpa, who died five years earlier. I have been depressed because the holidays were not remotely the same without her; my mom opted out of Thanksgiving and Christmas with us to work, and my cousins and aunt and uncle opted out of the major holidays to spend them at home or with the other part of their family, so it was just James Rachel and I going to my Uncle's to celebrate. Christmas was especially ridiculous because my extended family had cancelled once, then cancelled again the night before. I got into a car accident the night before celebrating Christmas and was able to make it, so I obviously didn't understand why she had to cancel after I went through so much trouble to buy them gifts and drive over a hundred miles to see my uncle. I can't imagine how hard it has been on my mom to suddenly be made an orphan; mother's day was terrible for her because she didn't have a mother any more to spoil and celebrate with. It was hard on my grandma's sister, who was extremely close to her and lost her and my great uncle within a couple of months.

Anyway, today was the anniversary. I was completely taken off guard because I honestly thought it was going to be on the fourth, so when I saw on facebook the post using my tattoo, the caption about her death, and saying "1 year ago today!" above it I was completley overwhelmed. The post even had the audacity to invite me to "see more memories from April 2nd!" I was infuriated. I voiced it through a status at first, then found out how to send an angry e-mail. I deleted the original status and voiced my own words about it.

Though we may miss her, my whole family got several years with her. My grandma had a great life even though parts of it weren't that great. She got to be in helicopters working with the army. She was married, ahd 3 childrens, had five grand children, and met her first great grandchild. She celebrated many events and attended parties and went fishing and hunting and camping. She experienced over 50 years of marriage. She lost my grandpa but had his memories. She was warm to everyone who walked through her door. She got to experience having two different voices in her adult life. She survived cancer. Her life was truly inspiring, and full.

The most prevelent emotion to encompass me is "grateful." I am grateful that I got to know her, even though it feels like she left us entirely too soon. I am grateful that she was able to prepare to leave us, organizing DVD's I let her borrow into one pile, pictures that she wanted to use for a slideshow into one pile, picking a casket. I am grateful that she is with the ones we have lost, especially her husband who she did miss for so long.

I love her, and miss her. But I know she is in a much better place that has no suffering and inmeasurable amounts of love. I am glad that she is happy.

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  1. Death is never easy, and being angry is indeed the first stage of grief, but it's important to put aside the anger, your Grandmother wouldn't want you to be that way. Put aside the anger and reflect on all the good. Writing is very cathartic. When I lost my Mother I wrote blog posts in alphabetical style to help me focus on the memories. I actually still have a few letters I didn't write ...but it was very helpful.

    Sandy at Bridge and Beyond

  2. Beautiful post. Letting go of a loved one is hard.