Everybody loves a good love story.
Well, my parent’s love story got its official start (according to the court) on this day 41 years ago. I always had my mom tell me their love story when I was younger. I thought it so romantic. I was the type of girl who dreamed of lifelong love…of some deep soul connection. I did find a connection that spoke at my soul level and have been married to that man for almost 19 years. I’m so happy that my parents have loved each other for so long. They’ve taught me about the hard work that goes into a marriage. They’ve shown me about commitment through their own life together.
I wrote about my parent’s love story last year. You can find that post here.
What I didn’t share in that post is that it also the day that my Grandma Reva died in 2013.
That was because I have this mixed emotion on this day. There is this joy for love…love that created me. There is also sadness for loss… a loss that shaped me.
If you’ve followed my blog for some time then you already know that she was a major source of love and wisdom for me.
She was the type of person that everyone was drawn to.
Her enthusiasm for people and for life was contagious.
She taught me life lessons in the way she interacted with what life threw her way.
She forgave people freely. I still can recall a specific conversation where I would have harbored resentment and her response was “their choices are between them and God.” I was in my early teens and that conversation still replays in my mind when I want to stay angry when I feel slighted or wronged.
She was also one of my biggest cheerleaders.
I’ve shared before that I struggled as she was dying.
Death had not been a big part of my experience in life before 2013. My father-in-law had lost his battle with cancer that February. That day is also associated with another memory, which I shared in this post.
That, along with some other things, became the catalyst for our move to Virginia. A move that, although I knew in my heart was right, I had a deep struggle with. I would FaceTime with my grandma and did a video tour of the house we were living in at the time.
She was so happy for me.
She was more concerned about my contentment than the fact that she was dying.
I dreamed of her last night.
A strange dream.
But most of my dreams are. In the dream, I was going through photos that I had not seen. I don’t know if I had been the photographer or if I was just organizing them. I was putting them in a series and editing words on them to create a story.
The photos were a series of attempts in which she was trying to do a handstand. I remembered thinking it so strange because she was in a wheelchair for many years before her death. The hip replacements had long needed to be replaced again, but her heart was not strong enough for surgery.
What I focused on in the dream was her outfit because it was dissimilar to those of her children, who were also in the photos. She had on white pants and a multi-colored shirt. I can remember it had blues in it.
As I tried to process the dream after I awoke, the thought struck me that the outfit was similar to what she wore to my wedding.
In the photo from my wedding, she is pictured with my grandfather (whose ancestry led to our trip to Scotland) and their four children. From left to right: my uncle, my aunt, my grandparents, my mother, and my aunt, the one who traveled to Scotland with my mom and me (she was also my matron of honor).
It felt like an acknowledgment to love.
Remembering my special day, my parent’s special day, and a special person who was present at both.
Grief is a strange thing.
Sometimes it comes upon you, unexpected.
Other times, like today, you know it’s going to be there.
There are still moments when I want to call her up and tell her what’s going on or get her advice on a struggle that I’m having.
Moments where I want to show her the photographs I’ve taken or the words that I’ve written.
Moments where I just want to hear her voice or kiss her cheek.
Even though the sadness creeps into the edges of my day, I feel infinitely blessed to have had her for as long as I did.
36 years of her pouring out her grace, her strength, and her peace over my life.
For that, I am blessed.
Let your light shine!