My grandmother died today. Just about an hour ago. Just about three miles away from where I sit. It pains me to say that I don't feel anything. I almost started to cry about fifteen minutes ago thinking about my dad and the pain that he's probably going through right now.
I never really had a relationship with my grandma. She was a wonderful woman, and gave her heart and love to a lot of people. I grew up 1500 miles away and felt a little bit like a forgotten grandchild. I always felt that my sister got the bulk of the attention she gave to us Albuquerque kids, and I am probably still a little resentful about it. Her mind started going south more than five years ago. I kinda thought that it didn't make much of a difference to me because she wouldn't have remembered me even if she had still been as sharp as a tack. Obviously, that was a silly tongue in cheek way of looking at it, but I always felt like an outsider.
I don't feel sorry for myself anymore. I kinda stopped doing that when I was 7 or 8. Maybe it was my imagination that I was slighted by her, but it has stuck with me no matter the reason.
When my dad called to let me know that his mother was dying, I don't even think I heard the grief in his voice. I think she had passed away for him the first time she didn't remember who he was. I can't say I blame him-- it take a lot of energy to process loss from 1500 miles away. I suppose it could have just been shock. Even though she hasn't really been around for years, it can be a lot to bear when told that the woman that gave you life is no longer living.
I tried for a second to put myself in his shoes and think about what I would feel if given the same news. I couldn't even go there-- just too painful.
My grandmother was one of the strongest women I've heard about. Her husband, my grandfather, killed himself when my father was just an infant, and she raised seven children all by herself. She buried one of them after he was killed in an accident. She stayed a loyal Christian throughout her life, and I suspect that her faith was what really gave her strength through the hardest times of her life.
I am proud to say that I come from such sturdy stock, even if the news of her death didn't make me cry.
Rest in Peace, Grandma Ifron. You deserve nothing but everything you wanted.