April first this year was not at all what it was supposed to be. Well okay after the fiancé and I got out of work we did try a few practical jokes and succeeded in fooling the kids. However, later in the day things took a bad turn. I received the following text from my mom.
I was heartbroken. I felt awful for my mom and sister. I felt terrible for my step family. She was my step father’s mother but treated my sister, my mom, and I like family. I felt bad and guilty for myself. For weeks my mom suggested I visit her because she made her peace with dying and it wasn’t looking good.
Everyday I kept telling myself I could visit tomorrow. It might have partly been that I didn’t want to see her in her worse. It was also that since I suffer from MS I was usually too drained after work to do anything. So I kept putting it off. I could go visit another day. Then she ran out of days and so did I.
Death and the limited time offer known as life never has really impacted me. If I grieved I grieved alone. If I cried I cried alone. This time it was different. It would come crashing down on me. At my computer at work I would start to lose it so I went into the bathroom to gain composure. I’m lucky to have bereavement leave because I cried a lot.
Some of it was the loss of my grandma some of it was the uncertainty of my own mortality. Some people maybe upset to read this next part but I was never afraid to die young. I have already dodged the cancer bullet a couple of times, I’m living with diabetes, and now MS. MS scares me. This thief in my head it could rob me of a future.
There I was for the first time I was afraid to die young. The reason is simple. I am engaged to a sweet woman. She is my best friend. She is my caretaker.
I want to grow old with her. I want to watch with excitement to see what her kids grow up to be. I want to be grandparents with her. I want to go on vacations with her. I want to be here for her kids and for her for many more decades.
At the wake and funeral I heard stories about my grandma from people who knew her for decades. She lost her husband when he was just 49. So she had to raise her kids on her own. She was a caterer she lived her life making sure others were happy and well fed. She was an ardent White Sox fan and knew more about the team than the managers probably did.
She believed in God and went to church on Sundays. She believed all her hard work and kindness would grant her entry in the Kingdom. At the end of her life she was at peace. She was ready and willing to go because she just could not stand the pain any longer.
She lived a full 88 years. I hope we are all able to live at least that long and we can live our lives to the fullest as she did. I will miss holidays at her house. I will miss getting to have enough leftovers that I wouldn’t have to cook for myself for at least a week. I will miss the fudge and cookies she made every Christmas. I will miss every card for my birthday and for Christmas that read to Patrick and love, GG. That is what one of the younger kids called her so she also addressed herself that way as well.
I am catholic I believe in God.
I sure do hope there is a heaven because I want eternity with the people I love.
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