My grandma passed away last year on New Year's Eve. It was that morning, my aunts were here through the night. I almost slept through the knocking on my door, but knew that it was an important knock, one that I shouldn't ignore. I got up, the house was probably chilly - my room is always freezing in the winter. There we all were, in the living room, standing around her bed, watching her sleep. We see her last breath together; my aunts, our close family friend, my parents and me. I don't remember a lot that happened in the immediate moments after my grandma peacefully entered to her eternal reward, but I do remember seeing my father weeping by her bookshelves. My mom stroking her head. My aunt holding her hand. We were all in a state of numbness, I think. In a way, while one weight - grandma's pain and suffering - was lifted, and another one, her absence, took its place.
I remember sitting on the couch with my aunt, trying to be whatever comfort I could - it was harder for my mom and her sisters than it was for me. I cried, mostly from awe that my grandma was no longer in pain, that she was finally with her Lord whom she loved and praised until she couldn't speak anymore.
This is challenging to write, but it's on my mind.
I think about the person hat I was a year ago. I was depressed, angry, resentful, straight-up unhappy. It was a very hard season, Christmastime 2012. Lots of stress. Lots of pain. Lots of emotions. Not a lot of joy. Not a lot of peace.
I'm thankful that it's not like that this year. There have been challenges this season, but nothing to compare. I'm not the same person that I was, and I'm so thankful. No one wants to know angry and depressed Hannah. She's a lousy human being.
The healing still isn't done. I don't know about everyone else but I can't stand to be in hospitals or nursing homes. Dealing with diseases like dementia and Alzheimer's fill me with almost paralyzingly fear and discomfort. Certain things that remind me of her make me really emotional...she loved reading a book about the book of Revelation in the Bible. My aunt has it now, and I saw it on her shelves a few months ago. I pulled it out and there were still neatly folded tissues where my grandma had stopped reading and meant to pick up again. I think there was even one of her blue ballpoint pens.. I had to put it away or else I would have started crying.
I'm not sure how it's going to be once New Year's Eve comes. I'm hoping not too bad, but I don't know. It has been a long, full year but this.. As it draws closer it feels like it just happened. I hope we all experience the healing we need. Despite the joy of knowing that Grandma is at peace, there is still sadness. You can sense it