Observant participant

The night of the 18th, I slept outside in my tent, in my yard.  Though by normal means of comfort, I was lacking what I adore… I slept well and deep for about 4 hours.  I awoke with the sun, and I heard the house stir before any noticeable activity.

I went to my grandmothers phone, to see if my uncle had yet called on her to go to the Home, to visit my grandfather.

The only number I see, is associated to her oldest living best friend.  Who; in the last year has been plagued with dementia and breast cancer. 

My grandmother dealing with the dwindling phone calls and emotional trauma of facing the fact, her best friend no longer knows her.

I see this number in the phone and immediately know Judy is gone. 

I pop into my gran’s room around 9:30am.

The phone call came at 7:59am.

If Judy calls it is usually later in the day.

I get a silent confirmation.

My gram gets up and dressed… I make her breakfast. 

I tell her about the phone call, and the time.

She thinks the same thing as me… I can’t help but admit my same feelings.

I take her dishes to the kitchen.

The phone rings.

By the time I return, it is confirmed Judy is gone.


I am find myself attempting to be far more consciously kind in dealing with my gram… knowing we do not share comforting belief systems.

When I hear this news, I know that for her, this is just the beginning of a downward spiral of  physical death.  She is 86, my gramps is 92.

Last year my gramps was put into a nursing home, he also has dementia…

They were married 61 years… sleeping side by side… his condition is deteriorating slower than most because my uncle goes to the home daily. He spends 6-8 hours there on a daily basis making sure my grandfather is not wasting away in his own filth…

My grandmother goes up to this home for 1-4 hours a day, just to be there.  My grandfather rarely interacts.  It is a depressing place and she feels both obligated and guilty.

My mother’s sister; my Aunt has also been deteriorating in health for some years, she is in her mid 60’s.  This year she was put into the same nursing home for her degrading condition. 

My mother died when she was 26 on my grandmother’s birthday.

Today, I spent a portion of my day in the hospital… with my family… as my Aunt made some final choices.

It was awkward.

I just wanted her to say what she wanted to say, uncensored.  But I feel as though, my family likes to sweep things under the rug and let things lie.  I didn’t ask, but maybe I should have.

Either way, I see the crumbling of my own foundation… the family I was brought into… the brother I had who died when he was 24… how only through the women now, do the blood lines continue.

How I am in the right place at the right time, and how beautifully torturous it is to watch suffering and release.

I honor these things.  I also honor and respect those who choose to live, and do so to the fullest when given the opportunity. 

Just being on the outside looking in, I would say she has, whether or not she recognizes it for herself.

Still My Gram sure is pulling some emotional burden in all this. 

Not too long ago, my grandfather’s youngest brother, ALSO passed… yet another friend gone, and younger to boot.

My grandmother is one of my favorite people in the world… and these days it is hard to show it… where I lack in compassion; I excel in intellect.

At times I think it is too bad that I am not more gentle, but I regret nothing about myself, and I am still learning from this.

I have a feeling, a lot is going to happen in a small amount of time, just shortly.

I look forward to honoring the infinite parts of ourselves together again soon.


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