Last night my mom have me the news about my grandmother that I have dreaded: she has maybe a month or two to live.
She is currently battling Stage 4 bowel, bladder and spine cancer. This is just three years after she underwent a mastectomy to get rid of Stage 3 breast cancer in spring 2011.
She is a fighter, that is for sure. She has always been. Strong, confident, and tough as nails.
When my mom told me this last night, I went numb. This woman is my person! She is my go-to gal for anything and everything. We have always had a strong bond, since I was a little girl.
My mom was a hardworking mom and her job required travel form time to time, and some longer hours. There was my grandmother! I would go to her house and all was right with the world. I would play “dress up” in her jewelry armoire and put on the “diamondy” jewelry (I was 5 so I said words like diamondy). I now have that armoire in my sitting room and every time I open a drawer I think of the little girl that so wanted to be like her grandmother.
My mom, sis and I joke that my grandmother is Emily Gilmore. But she REALLY is. My grandmother always wore killer designer suits and dresses to church. She ran a nursing program at none of the best hospitals in the area for four decades. She was on a million boards and committees. My grandfather and her toured the world and traveled a lot. They gave back to the community.
Never mind that my grandmother looked like Emily Gilmore, but was also one tough cookie in a fancy dress. But she is the greatest. And my sister and I are her world.
I was always by my grandmother’s side since I was a little baby. She is the one that taught me how to bake. She is the one that would pick me up from school and take me to choir practice. She taught me the piano. She supports me in anything I do.
She is my cheerleader and I am hers.
I simply cannot fathom a world without her. Without her saying things like “Right-O!” when getting off the phone with you or calling people a “dilly” when they do something silly.
I have admired this woman since I was pulling on the hems of her Sunday best. I am not ready.
She may be ready to be reunited with my grandfather, but I am not ready. I am selfish. I want her around for many more years.
I NEED her around for many more years. Wy has only had 3.5 years with her and that isn’t enough.
She is my therapist, my dearest friend, my role model, my hero, my Julia Child, my favorite person on this planet.
The loss of my grandfather gutted me (he died on my birthday six years ago) as he was the man that I thought raised the sun. He was the sweetest, most marvelous man.
But I had my grandmother. She would be there.
These two people are my pillars of strength. They are where I always got my support, undying love, laughter, great stories.
She cannot go. I cannot fathom a world where my grandmother isn’t just a phone call away. Or where I can’t tell her all about work or Wy or life. Where Wy can’t go over and cuddle with her on the couch.
I am not ready. I cannot wrap my head around this.
She is my hero. My person.
And there will be a permanent hole in my heart if she passes.
I won’t be the same without her. And I am devastated.
Just utterly devastated.