I never knew my grandparents very well. Either set. My last remaining grandparent died when I was in college and I had the great misfortune of having to tell my mother that her mother had passed. It was an awful task.
Are your grandparents still alive?
Busy mom of three boys, (can you even imagine?) avid workout queen and big supporter of Letters For Lucas, Tayarra of 5 Sharp Lives is my guest today with a very touching letter to her grandparents. I am envious of her memories of them.
I’m honored to be featured here. There is a small group of women that I have followed since I began blogging. Tonya is one of those women. I was caught up in her story especially around her parents. I know the love she talks about with my own parents. She has taught me never to take that for granted. Thank you, Tonya for your inspiration and allowing me here.
Grandma and Grandpa,
Awe, it hurts just writing the greeting. I miss you. And, now I’m crying.
It’s been forever it seems. There are times when I see the back of an older women’s neck that has silver hair and an admiring haircut, I think of you, Grandma. I yearn for her to turn around and match your features. It’s all I can do to not hug her or reach for her hand. It’s been over a decade since you left this earth, but I still feel such a connection with you and Grandpa.
Tionna and I were just talking about you the other day. I needed a dress for the work holiday party and she was my go to. I was trying on her shoes when I told her they reminded me of grandma. You always had the coolest shoes and I always loved the way you would dress. I remember sitting on your bed in your bedroom admiring you as you put away your laundry, “Someday I’m going to be like you.” That happens a lot; thinking and talking about you both. Sometimes I even suck the BBQ sauce off my fingertips after eating some BBQ just to smile as each sound reminds me of Grandpa. And, sometimes I will eat a Butterfinger and drink a Dr. Pepper just to take me back to those days when we would walk down to the dock surrounded by the smell of fish in the cold river where we’d turn and admire the houses at the top of that huge rock bluff. I long to perfect the holiday goodies you slaved over. No one can do it like you.
I do have a confession to make; you know when I said I wanted to be a Veterinarian? Well, that didn’t happen. I know you always said that I did whatever I said I was going to do, but that time it wasn’t true. The thought of me sticking my hand up multiple animals’ rear ends was not appealing to me and it turns out that Veterinarians take care of much more than sweet little puppies and kittens. I do still like country music, by the way.
I’m sure both of you would still be proud though. I’m sure you know that Dale and I have three boys because I’m quite certain you had a part in picking them out for us. Sweet, ornery, strong, and destructive… you would love them to pieces. They would have loved cuddling up with Grandpa as much as I did. I can almost see Waylon sitting on his lap when I picture how they would be together. And, picturing them all out on your deck swinging… I think I felt most loved in your arms in that swing.
A lot has changed. Your place is falling apart. It breaks our hearts knowing the place where we spent so much time and shared so many unforgettable moments is decaying. I’m sure none of this is actually news to you.
I guess what I really want to say is thank you. You taught us so much about life. About not giving up and following our hearts. You showed us that good things can come out of bad situations. You treated your friends like family. You taught us deep love. You showed me just how much punch can live in such a little frame. You taught me to laugh with a little bit of smart ass mixed in.
I live my life to be a strong woman. One that uses her past as a stepping stone, not an excuse. I still wish I had more of the confidence you carried, but I’m working on it. I live to be inspiring to my boys by working hard and living my best life and to others that cross my path because I never really know who’s paying attention. Both of you have and will have such a huge part in that. I know you’re smiling. I know you’re proud. Until I see you again, hold tight to that baby of mine. There are people up there, waiting on me. The run to them will be my final and most honored race.
Love you always,