Mindful-fun-da-mentals

Explorations of mind, paths, and life

A Card from Grandma

Posted on September 3, 2007 - Filed Under self reflect

My birthday passed with little excitement, almost disappointingly so. I’d felt pretty neglected, although I had a wonderful lunch at the Cheesecake Factory, and not one, but TWO slices of cheesecake (which took us a good 4 days to eat). The puppy spent most of the day in my lap, whimpering or scooting his feet while he dreamed of scurrying mice and empty water bottles. I spent the afternoon busily learning how to build a MySpace page – for the dog – but more to educate myself about MySpace & help my “computer consulted” families cope with all their teenager’s MySpace blunders. But overall, my son and husband said little, and the day passed by like any other day, except that I was now 38. I guess I began feeling pretty discouraged after my birthday as my hormones flutter upward and I felt more and more unappreciated.

The day after my birthday I got a card from my Great Aunt Connie and Uncle Johnny. They are amazingly involved considering how I have no clue when their birthdays fall and they rarely hear from me the gratitude I carry for their effort to stay connected, even if I do find joy and gratitude each and every time they connect with us. Every year Justin and I get some little greeting in the manner of a card. Justin always gets a little extra cash with his birthday card which just tickles him silly and starts the “burning hole” sensation in his baggy shorts. However, this year was something entirely unexpected.

As I opened the card out fell an additional handmade card with pressed blue flowers and a butterfly – vaguely familiar. Inside the card from Connie & John was written: “Enclosed is a card your Grandmother (Martha) ‘made’. Thought you’d enjoy it.” Suddenly I was awash with emotion as I held the handmade card wrapped in cellophane in my hands. I wondered what message Grandma had for me as I hadn’t seen her words written on a card for more than 6 years.
I had flashes of memories of my grandmother and her little square box in which she placed flowers from her garden to dry out. I remembered the fine sand tempting my touch and her gentle reminder to leave it be. I remembered my eagerness to check the progress of the treasures buried in the sand. I remember helping her press flowers into my own bookmarks and cards. Tears began to fall as I eagerly unwrapped the cellophane and opened the card, hopeful for a message of love and encouragement. The inside remained blank except for the rapidly building puddle of tears on the opened blank card.
Then something quieted, and almost as if she were there I could read her loving words reminding me that I am loved, that she is proud of all I have done, and how much she enjoys watching us grow and live our lives… I read the card in my mind several times, and imagined her soft hands squeezing my arm.

I cried, for quite a bit, missing her, missing her encouraging & loving words, and her warm hands that would stroke my arm or hand as we would sit together. Memories flooded my mind, and I was reminded again that she isn’t here. Regardless, it was the best gift this year, a card from Grandma, full of things unspoken, unwritten, but so deeply felt and known. I miss her, and am grateful that she made herself present this year through the postal efforts of Connie & John, just for me, what a gift.

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