After a protracted decline, my grandmother finally died this afternoon. She was 87 years old. She had been very sick and on hospice but this had happened several times before and she’d always pulled through — my way of putting it was “Grandma is dying again.” But since my aunt, her favorite daughter, died, Grandma just seemed to give up.
I was visiting my mother when the nursing home called. There was a man working on Mom’s kitchen cabinets. I was about to leave. I picked up the phone, handed it to her, went upstairs to get my stuff, came down and said, “I’m going.” And the cabinet man said, “You’d better stay.” And I noticed Mom was crying and then I knew. I wound up fetching the minister and then calling my siblings and my uncle and my cousins to let everyone know. Then I drove Mom to the nursing home and several of us — Mom, Dad, me, my brother and sister-in-law, my sister and brother-in-law, and my uncle — all sat around communing with Grandpa and the dead body. There was a shortage of chairs but only my sister was brave enough to sit on the bed where Grandma was lying.
Eventually the funeral home came and took Grandma away and I suppose the funeral will be Monday or Tuesday. Grandpa is rather devastated. They had been married for something like 55 years. (Not bad since he was her third husband. Though the second one barely counts. He left her in Texas during the honeymoon, packed his stuff and all their money and disappeared in the middle of the night, never to be heard from again. Grandma had to wire her parents for funds to get back to Ohio.)
Frankly, I’m glad it’s over. Grandma was in a lot of pain.