For the past year or so, I've had the chance to get to know my grandma in a way that I never thought possible. As she's been struggling with a debilitating brain disease, I've come to realize that the grandma I've known and loved for so long is no longer with us--almost. Even though she may not be entirely with it, I've had many chances to see her sweet spirit.
As I was sitting with her on the couch a month or so ago, just seeing how she has deteriorated made me cry. I just hugged her and rested my head on her shoulder. As I'm sitting there, crying for her, she reaches over, pats my leg, and says, "It's alright sweetheart." Which of course, made me cry even more. It was one of those sweet, yet brief moments where she maybe remembered who I was. When I look back and remember her, these are the times I will remember and cherish most. What a strong, sweet, and loving spirit she has.
As I was going through some old pictures the other day, I came across these pictures. They were taken just after I'd won Regional English Sterling Scholar my senior year in high school. Grandma and Grandpa were always so great to support me in every way that they could. I guess you could say that I'm just returning the favor as they enter this stage of their lives. This is how I always want to remember them--smiling and laughing--surrounded by those they love.