Last week my grandmother celebrated her birthday. I recently went to purchase her a birthday card. I started to look at the ‘grandmother’ sections. I could not find one card that summed up how important she is to me. Finally, I moved over to the ‘friend’ section & found the perfect card. I have thought about all she has done to impact my life & it seems that everything I have learned from her did not come from words she said, but rather observing her very life.
- She would set the breakfast table to night before. I would awake each morning to see our dishes, cups, utensils & napkins already placed on the table. Through that she taught me the idea of making others feel like a priority. You could not help but look at the table & think that you were important.
- When she would make hot cakes for breakfast, she would not just make one big batch & put them in the middle of the table. Instead, she would make them one by one to be sure we had fresh & hot food. She never ate them while we did. She would talk with us & be engaged in whatever we were saying. She would reserve the last bit of batter & make herself the final hot cake. I learned that putting others first is worth the wait. I also learned that when you put yourself last, you can better hear all those around you.
- She is the person I wanted to hate the most when I was a teenager when she found that I was stashing my food so I did not have to eat. She opened up the darkest secret I had ever held & not only put a flashlight to it but brought a spotlight to it. I know realize, she might have saved my life. I have come to realize that love requires tough things sometimes. She showed me that boldness is just part of love & when it is laced with compassion & care it can lead to wonderful results…even if there are bumps along the way.
- I have seen tears well in her eyes as we discussed my mother being sick & what the doctors were saying. I heard a quiver in her voice when she would talk & I would hear her say ‘Pop Pop’ when the emotions or news just seemed too much to bear. She taught me that it was ok to be scared & feel emotion but she also showed me just how important it was to have a solid friendship with a husband…someone who could be a support when life was overwhelming.
- I watched as she cleaned, cooked & cared for my older 2 as I was expecting my youngest. She would busy herself with washing counters, using a vacuum & delicately folding clothes. She showed me that love went far beyond words but that she could show love through the mundane things that could have been neglected.
- Maybe the most common memory of her isn’t anything that remains the same. I can always remember her gathering our entire family together for holidays. There were big meals with lots of food. She was the best at coordinating food & schedules & making everything seem so seamless. As the years went on & age began to take over, these dinners moved to restaurants but they are still my favorite times. She instilled in me the value of family & why it was important to work hard to find time for everyone to have a meal together. She also taught me to enjoy the gift of family.
Read more about both of my grandparents HERE!
I am definitely better because of all she invested & still invest in me. Happy Birthday Grandmother! You are one of the best people I have ever had the honor of knowing.