Monday, July 23, 2012

Grandma Catherine: A Memorial

Last week at the cottage, I wrote a memorial for my grandmother who passed away on July 10th. I thought I would share it here, along with a video of Grandma, my mom and S singing together. So glad I managed to capture such a recent, joyful moment!

The Lucky One

When it comes to sharing memories of Grandma Catherine, so many ideas come to mind. I could mention all the fun times growing up as a child, visiting Grandma on St. Leger and raiding her snack cupboard (though as Vanessa recently pointed out, we had to stay away from Uncle John's stash of Zehrs chips!) There were all the chaotically memorable Christmases, with the whole Geffros clan crammed around the kitchen table, fighting over the remaining stuffing. And how could I forget the annual multi-day sleepovers each Summer, spending days with Grandma at the Queen St. park and Market Square, scratching lottery tickets at the deli with the "A crowd" (Edna, Emma, Frieda, Verna, Hannah and I'm sure there were others!) 

But now that Grandma has passed on from this life and on to the next, what remains with me most vividly are the more recent years. Conversations with Grandma in her apartment, me on the couch and Grandma on her favourite chair, munching on Pringles with the news or sports on mute in the background. Being warmed by the sparkle in Grandma's eye and her joyful laugh as she watched my daughter toddle around the living room, getting into mischief. Grocery shopping for Grandma and never failing to see the ol' standbys on the list - bananas (for the potassium, of course), French bread, 4-5 slices of deli meat, pineapple cream cheese and a Farmer's Market pie. And then telling her that the total was way more (or less) than it actually was and seeing how quick she was to brush her hand at me, saying "Ohhhhhhh hush". (And then she'd always be sure to give a "tip" on top of the actual total!) But most of all, simply appreciating all of her MANY admirable qualities - wisdom, patience, caring, generosity, humour, strength of mind and body, sociability, determination, gratitude, forgiveness - and of course an unwavering love for her family and friends. 

Following Grandma's passing, many people thanked me for the time I spent with Grandma over the recent years, mentioning that she was lucky to have me close by. My immediate answer was that it was my pleasure to spend this time with her. Because it certainly was. But it was more than that. *I* was the one who was lucky to have such a wonderful person in my life for 33 years, and Grandma I thank YOU for all the time we got to spend together. You will be forever loved and forever missed. 

xxoo Kristy

If You're Happy And You Know It!


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