Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Saying Goodbye

I know I haven't written in a long time (not entirely true - i've written, just haven't posted) but something happened today that made me think for a while.

My grandmother passed away this morning. She was my last remaining grandparent, my paternal grandmother. I was never really close to her. I grew up in Georgia, 97% of my family is in Puerto Rico. She and my mother didn't have a great relationship for many years, and that kind of reflected in how we interacted with each other. I've actually been thinking a lot about her lately...

When I was about 8 years old, she came for a visit when my youngest brother was born. She took me to Michaels (one of my first trips I can clearly remember) and bought me a latch hook kit of a bunny in some flowers. I remember her teaching me how to do it and the tricks to holding the yarn just so. After she left back to PR, I continued to work on it but lost interest. I put it away for many years. When I was in college, I found the box and finished all the latch hook part but never did anything with it... I just put it back in the box until I decided what to do. A couple of days ago, I pulled it out and made it into a small pillow. As I finished it, I thought a lot about my relationship with my grandmother and how many times I was secretly jealous of my cousins who grew up with her (and my other grandparents). I tell people often how lucky they are to be able to just hop in the car and visit with family, how lucky they are to have to go to their grandparents' house on holidays. I thought about once in high school when I was in PR for my cousin's quineaƱera (on my mom's side), I had my aunt drop me at my grandmother's house. That was probably the last time I spent real quality time with her. She commented on the white eyeliner I was wearing (no judging... I was 15!) saying how she remembered the last time it was in fashion. haha. She also taught me how to make bobbin lace that day (which I came home and taught my mom, then I forgot how to do it myself!).

Anyway, today I was left in a bit of a daze. Although it wasn't unexpected, it was still unexpected. I found myself filled with regret that I had never spent more time, that I didn't try to call her more, that I didn't send her pictures of the wedding (I gave all the pictures to my parents who said they would print out a few but never got around to it.) It was just weird. It makes that pillow mean more. That pillow that took me almost 20 years to make. It was my introduction to yarn crafts.

Although I never had a close relationship with my grandmother, she was my grandmother. She taught me things I'll never forget, whether she meant to or not. Rest in peace, Mama Clara. Que Dios te bendiga.

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