My Super Granny would have been 85 just a couple of days ago, February 5. The fact that we didn't get to celebrate that birthday with her is something that I know cuts deep, not only for me, but for my whole family.
Super Granny was a giver. Of many things. To me, she gave love, joy, good advice, lessons on life experience, and a lot of fabulous presents! To my Dad she gave life, love, discipline, understanding, support, and, among countless other things, an incredible and undying model of parenthood. And I know that when my Dad married my Mom, she gave her many, many of those very same things.
And let's face it; without her, our Christmas tree would never have overflowed quite like it has for so many Christmases past.
It's so strange for me to think that I'll never see her again. I saw her just this past Christmas, and she was fine. Just as headstrong and independent as ever. I think it'll be a very long while before I forgive myself for not even saying goodbye. I knew she was leaving, the last day I saw her, in the back of my mind I remembered. But I was in a hurry, as so many of us are these days, and I somehow just assumed that I'd hug her neck and say a proper goodbye later.
Unfortunately that wasn't the case.
Hearing what had happened was like a slap in the face. It was always what Mom and I would call our "worst fear". Even still, when it actually became reality, it seemed like the least likely explanation. That there must be something else, or that it was some kind of bad joke. Or maybe just a miscommunication. Still, what was our "worst fear" turned out to be the very best for Super Granny. She passed away in her sleep-- in her bed, in her home. What better way is there to go?
I will always miss Super Granny, but she's keeping better company now than she ever could here with us. It's always hard to say goodbye, and it's even harder to remember to celebrate their life rather than dwell on the sadness of loss. I just try to remember that it's only a "loss" for us. For her, now, everything is perfect. Everything is as it should be.
I love you, Super Granny. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for being absolutely everything that a super granny should.
My family, at the LaDuke Family Reunion