On December 9, 2004 my Gram died suddenly. She was 87. On the day she died she had been to a clergy / spouse Christmas party where she was able to visit with old friends. When we went into her apartment to clean it out we found letters she was in the process of writing to her senators and representatives. I celebrate that she lived a very active life right up until her death. Not everyone is blessed in that way.
My Gram and I shared a love of writing. This was something she nurtured in me when I was young, writing down my stories as I dictated them to her. These days most of my writing is in the form of sermons and letters for the church newsletter and the occasional blog post. Gram, though, wrote poetry and essays and short stories and journaled almost every day.
Several years ago when Gram asked me what I would like to inherit when she died I told her I wanted her journals, writings and poetry. I have had them now in my possession for a little more than three years. When I first started to read through them I would just cry.... for the beauty of her words.... for the love she had for her family.... for what I knew and what I didn't know about her life....and for everything I missed about her. The tears wouldn't stop so I had to put her pages away for a while.
But now I think I am ready. I am ready to read the words written in her distinctive script. I am ready to learn more about her life than I could possibly have known as a busy and preoccupied granddaughter. And I've decided to copy out her poetry and shorter writings so I can share them with the rest of the family. Maybe I'll even share some of them here.
I do celebrate that Gram is now part of the Communion of Saints and that she is with me always.... but I miss her and wish she were still writing poetry and going to parties and composing letters to her senator....because she loved living in the world and the world, for me at least, is a better place because she lived.