The Monday after my birthday and before Logan’s brought the passing of 102 year old Granny. We knew it was coming as she had been moved to hospice just the week before. We spent lots of time with her the days preceding to her passing. She gave no indication that she knew we or her children were there. It was a known fact that death was imminent. She was 102 years old for goodness sake! Those facts didn’t alleviate the intense pain when the time came for her to graduate into glory .
We didn’t see her the day prior because I was exhausted . Her children were there , so I wanted to give them space. I would give anything to gaze into her face again. I miss her smile. I miss her telling me to get some good gossip the next time I came over. I miss her making me promise to visit again soon even if I had been there all week. I miss her reminding me that my husband was a great man and my children were awesome. I miss her. I mentioned to Michael how much I missed her although she wasn’t even my Granny. He gently reminded me that she had been in my life for over 20 years. She was just as much my Granny as she was his. We had spent a good deal of time with her in her final years. Of course, I missed her. I love that man!
On a warm , overcast day, the family gathered to say their goodbyes. Her grandchildren came from Mississippi, Alabama, South Carolina, as well as many other places. Great grandchildren gathered alongside their parents to bid farewell to a remarkable woman. One who loved with all her heart and soul. One who valued family a great deal which showed in the family who came to celebrate her life. Don’t get me wrong. She had an opinion and she wasn’t afraid to voice it. She liked things done a certain way and had no problem telling you that you were doing it wrong. She had her peculiarities as do we all. We said goodbye to a beautiful woman then left to return home rather than go to the family gathering afterwards.
People are mean, even family. Autism doesn’t take a break simply because that person is grieving. It’s not that easy. Then again, nothing with autism is easy. I took the children to the car immediately after the service concluded without saying goodbye to the aunts, cousins , or even Michael’s mother. It was a difficult day for me already. I know my limitations. I know when to stand my ground to make a point regarding autism. I also know when I’m too drained to do it without harming familial relationships for my husband’s sake. He stayed. We left. Life sucks at times. It was a day to honor a woman we loved with all our hearts not one to point out other people’s flaws. Out of respect for her and love for my husband, we returned home.
On the way home, Logan looked at me so serious as if to gauge if I was alright. I attempted to put on a brave face for him. In that second, I saw that he knew it. He could see my pain both at losing Granny and having to face mean people. At that moment, he looked out the window and said :
” It says more about their character than it does ours , Mom. “