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Only To Be With You

I have climbed the highest mountain
I have run through the fields
Only to be with you
Only to be with you
–From U2’s I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For

Since her death, my grandmother’s spirit has scaled the walls that define the physical world that for 30 years hindered our togetherness. She was with me last night when that crummy thing was said to me. (I’ll keep her reaction to myself.) And, she was with me last night when I picked Bridgette up and twirled her around in the kitchen. She reminded me that she was a young mother once and that those three little babies, one of whom was my mother, made her so happy.

And, she was there this morning, when I was getting Bridgette ready for church. She was standing right there as I dressed her and I know she thought she was beautiful and that she reminded her of me as a baby.

She sat with us in the church today, and we exchanged a knowing. I felt her slip away during lunch, maybe off to see someone else she’s been missing? I know she’ll back soon, though, because of a comment one of you left on my blog:

“…I have heard way too many stories not to believe that the souls of our departed loved ones check in to say their farewells, blow us a kiss, let us know all is well. And then it is our job to let them know WE will be okay so they can go on along.”

For over 40 years, I’ve shared my grandma with 50 different people, feeling all but invisible most of the time. But for the last 36 hours, I’ve had her all to myself. And, I can’t believe she came to see me, and she knows now, I never forgot, and soon I’ll be able to let her go.

I want to thank everyone for their kind words during this time. I have never been good at handling death. When Robert and Juliette both asked me on separate occasions if I’d heard about the big-box store employee who was trampled to death on Black Friday, I came unhinged.

I reminded them both: “DO NOT REPEAT STORIES LIKE THAT TO ME. I DO NOT WANT TO HEAR THAT STUFF.” My imagination is wild and vivid and I immediately imagine everything from plummeting Wal-Mart stock to the grief of the man’s mother, child, wife.

Thus, you can imagine that the carriage, which Emily Dickson likened to death, I have imagined as that great pumpkin that carried Cinderella. Grandma hasn’t stepped inside it yet, but eventually, she will and will be on her way to centuries that are more like days. She was pragmatic that way, and that is just one thing I loved about her. And, I’m not OK — yet.

Gen X Blog Jennifer Chronicles

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10 Comments

  1. BethanyRose

    Hey Auntie Jen

    I miss Grandma Bertie so much, she was loved by many and that gives me comfort, I am sure it gave her comfort too. Though we do not see her body anymore, she is around, guiding us and helping us in ways we don’t realize until they are over. As long as we remember her and never forget all she has done for us … she will always live on. As you know she lost Grandpa long ago, she had Jesus in her heart and she was called home.
    She will always be watching over us, all that has changed is she is no longer the matriarch of the family, she is now our guardian angel.

    I love you my dear Aunt Jen
    you are always in my prayers
    love always-Bethany Rose

  2. Debra W

    Jen, I have been meaning to tell you how sorry I am about the passing of your dear grandma. I was completely awed by the story of her “visit” with you and am so glad that she was able to give you that gift. Love crosses all boundaries, doesn’t it? Your grandma truly loves you and has proven it in such a bittersweet way.

    Love,
    Deb

  3. MuseSwings

    Jen, I’m so sorry to hear about your dear Grandmother! Grandparents are such amazing people and offer such unconditional love it is hard to let them go- but good to know they are just a prayer away. I pray for you and your family for comfort and peace.

  4. Le @ third on the right and cold peas

    love you jen le xoxoxooxoxox

  5. Lorrie Veasey

    Hi Jen-
    So sorry for your loss! Will keep you and yours in my thoughts and prayers.

    So happy that things with your brother are looking good.

    Is that the Forrest Gump soundtrack? It’s beautiful.

  6. sulustu

    What sadness and beauty all at once. I pray God’s blessings upon you now and always.

  7. Melinda

    Jen,

    I have lost many important people in my life, including my first husband, all my grandparents, my father, and many, many friends. I truly do believe that spirits from our loved ones visit us and often give us what we need at the times when we need it. I am so glad that you have your grandmother with you–and know that she always will be there. This belief that I have has made it so much easier for me to face the deaths of people that I love-because I really do know that they are never gone, completely.

    This piece was so beautifully written–it also brought tears to my eyes; thank you for sharing it with us.

    Take care (and hugs)

    Melinda

  8. CGDK

    oh Jen, I’m sorry to read of your grandmothers passing but so happy you found her today. It will take time for it to ‘be ok’. My Grandma left 10yrs ago and I still miss her heaps but I feel she drops by to check on us from time to time and I smile…

  9. avtcoach

    Hey Jen, I am so sorry to hear about your grandmother. I lost mine several years ago and she actually stayed with me a long time. Her death was a defining moment for me, maybe because I was in my 40’s and saw her loss from a deeper perspective. I think for me there was also something about the way our elderly die. I was around my grandmother in the last weeks and it wasn’t the sudden TV version. I think that really bothered me. Now my mom and I will think of something she would say or do and we laugh about it, really smile. But we both still really miss her. I will say a prayer for you this week. Also need to come back and catch up on your posts. How is your brother?
    Take care…

  10. Anonymous

    Thank you dear Jen–
    I am at a loss for words. Your “visit” from Grams touched my heart and gaveme assurance she is STILL keeping a watchful eye upon her family.
    Bill and I, along with other members of the family spent nearly 4 hours at Rose Hills this morning. So much to do and so many papers to sign. I am glad I was not alone and was relieved when it was time for us to leave.
    I love you– Hug my Angels for me.
    As ever and Always– Mom

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