TW for death mention, depression, vivid descriptions of the deceased.
I believe I blogged about it before, my grandmother not being in good health. I have been gone off the internet (at least on my computer) for almost a week now, but to people who care enough to read my posts; She had passed away the 29th of this month.
I was getting ready for work, then I got a phone call… and usually my volume is never turned on; but today for some reason it was. I darted to my phone and I answered it (it was my father) I know sometimes my phone doesn’t really work like its supposed to, but I knew he was hesitating behind the other line and I could feel my heart sink and at the same time it felt like I was going to puke up my entire insides. Through sobbing, he told me “She passed away” and I felt my eyes tear up, but I didn’t cry; at least I didn’t let him hear me.
My husband was in the shower, and could hear bits and piece of my conversation as I was trying to keep myself calm and keep my dad calm while also feeling guilty because I wasn’t crying…I kept telling my dad “It’ll be okay, I’m going to come get you.” and things along the lines of that. I remember saying “I’m really sad, and I want to cry, but me crying and being a mess isn’t going to solve or help anything” and then I told him again, I’m on my way to get him and we both exchanged I love you’s and hung up.
Swallowing all of my feelings, my husband had finally got out of the shower and I just started at him and told him the news of what my father had told me. He looked at me; scared, and sad, he didn’t know my grandmother that well or had a connection with her really at all but he knew how much she meant to me and how much I was hurting on the inside. He got dressed and kept giving me this look as I started to get ready to go pick up my father.
I wasn’t smiling, I wasn’t crying, I didn’t look like anything. My chest hurt so much, my throat felt like a potato was in it, but I had to be strong for my dad.
I’m a strong believer in paganism, so I think I was projecting my sadness on to my husband in a way (I told him that when he said he felt sad) and then he would make small jokes going “stop doing your witch magic on me” and things along the lines of that.
We got to my dads house and he was in the middle of making phone calls, and I offered to help. He didn’t really cry or anything; he said he was fine for the time being, and that was really it for that much of it.
Then we drove to Gilchrist, the hospice place she was in in Towson. My heart sank when I seen the building, just like it did any other time because all I could picture was my grandmother in this place (not like it wasn’t a beautiful or nice place; it was honestly the best place for her considering the circumstances of her “stay”). I walked inside and we went down the elevator, you could see her room from the elevator. I approached the shut door with a sign flipped around that used to say “no smoking, oxygen in use” and I just felt my chest ache. I knew what it meant, I knew what I was going to walk in to.
My dad had said before he didn’t want to walk in there, he didn’t want to see her lifeless. So I offered to go in myself, for him. I went in first, and there she was… I had barely walked in the door; it was terrifying. How the rooms are set up, or at least hers, you opened the door and the bathroom was there so you couldn’t see the full body/face yet until you walked passed the bathroom. The second I saw her I stopped dead in my tracks, about 5 feet away, and turned around and walked back out and told my dad he didn’t want to go in.
Of course, he asks “why?” and I tell him because she has absolutely no colour, so he goes in anyway and just starts bawling.
I got closer, and she just looked so… pale, lifeless, her mouth was wide open as if she was sleeping (she snored, and slept with her mouth open) and it just… she looked at peace. Her skin didn’t have wrinkles, but she had no colour. The cherry angiomas on her forehead were purple/dark instead of red. Her tongue was blue… she looked like a wax figure that had yet to have the finishing touches to it.
I just could tear up, I couldn’t cry. I didn’t cry.
We didn’t stay in the room that long, and my dad went back upstairs after he calmed down and we waited for the social worker so we could tell them the decision we made; since we had (literally, $0 actually) no money to afford a ceremony, we donated her body to science and to possibly help someone else out in need because we know thats what she would have wanted, and we will receive the ashes in the mail.
My dad said he didn’t want to go back in the room before we left, but I wanted to and I did. I couldn’t help it, even if she was lifeless, I still wanted to see her again and it just felt unreal. Everything felt unreal. It still, feels unreal.
We got home, after we ate and hung out with each other, and I played the game with my husband to try to get my mind off of things while my dad listened to music. He started to play Delilah by Tom Jones while sitting next to me and singing (mumbling, because hes shy about singing) and I had told him if he felt like crying, this game can wait and he can cry on my shoulder and I’ll be there for him; and thats exactly what happened.
Eventually (at around like 2am) I went to bed, as well as my husband…. only to be woken up in an hour to be told my Uncle(her brother) had passed…. which was less than 15 hours apart from my Grandmother.
I was in shock, I didn’t know how to feel (I still didn’t cry), we were all in shock, my dad didn’t even cry until we got to the viewing. Not to mention…. my great Aunt, had yet to call us back so we could tell her that my Grandmother died. We eventually went back to sleep and woke up late in the afternoon and talked about what we were going to do, with telling my Aunt (we got the confirmation to let people know he had passed) My dad didn’t want to do it, so we gave someone else in the family her number to talk to her; but who does she call? Us.
My dad thought about ignoring the call, letting someone else handle it. But, this may have been our only opportunity…. I told him to put her on speaker so I could talk to her too. As soon as he said “mom” she started crying, then when he said there’s more, he told her that her brother had also passed and she screamed, it was the most heartbreaking thing I ever had to hear…..
I still didn’t cry.
A few days later, about 4 or 5, we had taken my dad home. I looked at the household that I, we, grew up in and it hit me. I didn’t want to go inside, I couldn’t…. but unfortunately I had to get something so I went in and I just felt so empty inside. I stared at the chair she used to sit in and the bed she used to lay in, and I just felt like a part of me was missing. He gave me her bible (she was Methodist) and her I.D to take with me and to hold on to then I got in the car, we said our I love you’s and goodbyes and we went on our way.
I finally cried.
I cried so hard, there is still an internal battle with me wanting to call her or go visit her. Part of my mind is telling me to call to check up on her, while the other part of me is fighting with the other part of my mind telling it “Hey, she’s gone…. you can’t do those things anymore”
The last thing she had ever said to me was “I love you” and its really shitty, because I told her “You’re going to be okay” and she nodded yes; I know she knew I was lying (she even told me right before she told me her last “I Love You” was “I’m Dying”) but I didn’t let her see me cry, and I kept saying I love you over and over again (and so did she)
With the last bit of energy she had, she just kept telling me she loved me.
I know its my own selfish reasoning, why I want her back. Why I want her back on this earth, why I want her to hold me and tell me she loves me again and again. I want to be able to pick up the phone and ask how her day was, even though I knew how it was going. I want to hear my dad complain about how she was getting on his nerves but he loved her so much. But I know she isn’t suffering anymore, and this is what she wanted. To be at peace, to not be in pain anymore. But I just cant help to be selfish.