I’ve moved around a lot.
Different cities, houses, flats. I’ve met a lot of people throughout my travels and housing arrangements. Some have been less than desirable. Whether it be the particular roof that’s been over my head, or just the disagreeable nature that humans encounter in closed quarters…I’ve had my share of iffy (oh how I’m being generous in that terminology) situations.
Of course, I’ve had some wonderful ones.
The common trend in those situations has been the sense of family that comes from the household. I’ve been away from my “blood” family for over 10 years now (with a brief reunion in between), so it’s always nice to be surrounded by people who create the same type of loving environment.
I have that right now.
My grandma passed away at around 7am EST Dec 8th. She hung on about a week longer than we had been expecting. Just 1 month and 11 days before the 10 year anniversary of my Grandpa’s passing. Both had cancer. Both had very long and hard final days. Both passed on a day I had plans.
I know that seems black. It’s a classic trait in my family (dad’s side). I couldn’t help but think of that when I heard the news.
My roommate’s birthday was earlier in the week, and this Saturday was a day devoted to him. Brunch at the house with a group of his and his wife’s good friends, then us guys were to go on a brewery tour. I made an early rash decision to withdraw from these plans; quite intent on wrapping myself up in blankets and watch sad movies. Then the idea of family hit me.
I couldn’t be there for mine. They couldn’t be there for me.
Since the day I moved in with Paul and Tara, I have felt welcome. I’d say they try really hard to create a warm welcoming environment in our home…but it’s just something that comes so naturally to them. I got that sense from them the first time we met, and it was a big reason why living with them felt like such an obvious choice. They also have a fantastic group of friends that I have had the pleasure of getting to know over the last year. It adds to that sense of home.
Spending the day eating Tara’s delicious cooking, laughing, joking, and overall great conversation with equally great people, was the right way to celebrate my grandma. (Oh and beer. There was delicious, delicious, craft beer of course!) It also helped that as a group we were celebrating Paul. Considering my Grandma’s nature as a nurturer, a giver, and a selfless woman, it was perfect. In spirit I was commemorating her by celebrating a good friend of mine.
My mum put it best later in the afternoon when I finally was able to get a hold of them:
“It’s good that you have those type of people around you. Grandma wouldn’t want you to spend the day sad. She tried very hard to always make sure that everyone was happy and comfortable.”
That’s when I finally had my first cry of the day. In the end, I felt like I was there for my family and they for me.
One in actuality; one in spirit.
RIP my beautiful Grandma.
Je t’aime pour toujours.