I had a brief thought today, a sweet one, of my grandma & I talking. She was talking, and suddenly stood up & rushed into her room. She returned promptly with a pile of loose papers. Some notebook sheets & some plain white. On it were scribbles, paragraphs, crossed out sections, arrows & lots of exclamation points and parenthesis. My grandma held it out to me, and sat down. She said “I’ve started my story for you….” She always knew just what I would love. So many days, we would sit together at her table, drinking Russian tea & buttering rhubarb bread, or eating chocolate chip zuchini cake, and talking…..talking about everything that would pass through our minds. (And being Dutch women, it could get pretty random.) She would tell me stories about when she was young, and growing up. Stories about the farm, and the men who would milk the cows. I’d ask her about cooking, or how to fix something. When I would get stuck with a recipe, I’d call my grandma first. I guess I figured I knew my mom would know the answer, but why not go straight to HER source?
Anyway, one day I remember talking with my grandma & asking her if she would write some of her stories down. She modestly told me that she didn’t have anything interesting to say. I just laughed. Of course she had interesting things to say…she was my grandma! Needless to say, when she brought out that stack of papers of her stories & memories, I was touched…more than touched. I felt love. She was so wonderful. Always thinking of other people…and I was her favorite, so of course she’s do that for me. (That’s a joke in my family,….i’m not just conceited.) Those pages, her history & thoughts, the way she would explain what things were….gentle yet so matter of fact.
I’m reading a book now, called “For one more day” by Mitch Albom, and for a second, I thought….if I could have one more day with someone, it’d definitely be my grandma. I miss her incredibly. I wouldn’t want to do anything extreme, just take off my shoes & sit indian style on her blue kitchen chairs. Pull up a cup of tea & listen. I could listen to her tell me stories for days. Her facial expressions were one in a million. Oh for one more day. Just one.