The advent of winter coincides with my grandmother’s passing.
My feelings of regret and loss are profound. I wish I’d known her better. At the same time I celebrate her long life, her zest for learning, and the joy she found in creative efforts. She was a painter, a weaver, an explorer, and a visionary. Her life was characterized by seeking out answers, looking for puzzles, and learning about everything.
Longevity has blessed my family. I’m fortunate to remember all four of my grandparents…and blessed to still have both on the maternal side. So many years of history and experiences shared. So much lost with each life.
How do you measure the impact of a life?
For my grandmother, it might be in the number of students who found themselves touched by her love of teaching. Some of them went on to become renowned artists in their own right. Surely it can be found in appreciation of the art pieces she created and exhibited over many decades. Certainly it can be measured in the lives of her three children, her seven grandchildren, and fourteen great grandchildren. Her legacy is broad.
My grandmother’s actions in life taught me:
– no task is too daunting to undertake
– interesting questions demand answers
– every desire is worth examining
– curiosity is compelling
– alone doesn’t have to mean lonely
– whatever you can do, you should
– live without regret
– try everything you’re tempted to experience
– celebrating your achievements is fine
– giving does not mean only sharing wealth
– memory fails, record the things that matter
– life doesn’t stop, even when you do
The finality of death is never easy to grasp. Life is fragile and time takes away all things. Loss is difficult. Each person must forge their own path through grief. I choose to celebrate rather than mourn her passing.
Safe journey, Grandma.