April 4. That day may not have any significance to you, but it will forever be a part of my life. It was on this day that I lost someone very important to me; my Grandma Reba. I knew that one day I was going to have to face her passing, but I had always hoped that she would survive long enough see me graduate from college. Grandma Reba passed away after fighting a long battle with cancer. She was so young. Regretfully, I never realized what a great and influential woman she was until she passed away. Despite the fact that she was feeling ill and in a lot of pain, Grandma Reba would travel all over the area with the multiple clubs and organizations she was involved with. She was always aiming to help others in need. I never thought twice about the things she accomplished in life until now.
Around the holidays of 2000, Grandma Reba went into the hospital. It was a minor complication or so we thought. She would write letters to me. Grandma Reba had attended the chapel services, and sent me this pamphlet that she got from one of the services. Grandma knew that I had low self-esteem that I have been struggling with for a long time. This pamphlet was about that. It really touched me, and the things that she had to say about it. Grandma told me that I should not buy into others. People will tell us what we should do because they too feel inferior. I think about this now, and I realize that she was right. Then around January I got the phone call that she was going “downhill”. When we saw her at the hospital, I noticed that she was not herself. Grandma Reba had lost a lot of weight and looked disheveled. She was happy to see us, but was unsure who her loved ones really were. We were informed that a tumor was in her brain. I realized that the end was near. I was so heartbroken. I did not want to lose her so soon. Although she fought the cancer for seven years it was not really so soon after all.
A few weeks after our visit to her in the hospital she was put into a nursing home.. I could not fathom my sixty two year old grandma being in a nursing home. I went up to visit her a few times while she was there. She still remembered her firstborn grandchild, but had a hard time remembering my sisters and some of the other family members. She slept most of the time that I was there, and she was on morphine for the pain. I cried a lot while I was there. It hurt so much. When she did pass away, I did not really accept it until the wake and I saw her lying there. It was really hard because it did not look like her at all. I realized that she was not going to be around anymore. I was also angry because she was supposed to see me graduate from college.
Although my grandma is gone I would like to make her proud of me. I think about her every day, and I believe that I miss her more and more every day. Because of my new sense of her, I have decided to concentrate more on school and work harder than I ever have. I want to be able to walk down the aisle and receive my diploma and say “This one is for you Grandma.”
This tragic event in my life will forever change me. I sometimes feel so alone. None of my friends know what it feels like to lose someone close to them. I decided to write this letter/story because I want others to know that they are not alone. I also want others to know what a great person that my Grandma was, and that I realized this too late. I hope that others do not realize what I did too late. I know that my Grandma would be proud of me because I have decided to better myself in response to her death.
Grandma Reba would want me to be happy and to continue my life. When other people lose someone that they love, they should remember that.
Dustine L. Wilm